OAKMONT, Pa. – It was another marathon day at the 116th U.S. Open.
After rain washed out most of the first round Thursday, play was conducted from 7:30 a.m. to 8:42 p.m. Friday in an effort to get the tournament as close to on schedule as possible. Here are nine observations from the conclusion of the first round and the start of the second.
Not his Day: World No. 1 Jason Day couldn’t get much going in his first round, carding a 6-over 76. Day turned right around and went back out to the course for his second round and started to, well, turn things around, playing 15 holes in 1-under. Currently in a tie for 55th, he’ll likely need to play the tough seventh through ninth holes at even par to make the cut.
Heading home: It will be a short week for Buffalo’s Aaron Alpern, the caddie for Smylie Kaufman. A 7-over 77 in the first round for Kaufman was followed by a 76 in the second round. Kaufman will miss the cut once it’s made Saturday.
Going deep: It’s no surprise that long-hitting Dustin Johnson led the field in average driving distance in the first round at 320.9 yards. It’s somewhat surprising, though, that just behind him was an amateur. Jon Rahm averaged 317.4 yards off the tee. Rahm did not start his second round Friday. He shot 6-over 76 in the first round.
Movie time: What does a player do when his second round isn’t scheduled until 8:06 a.m. Saturday? Bubba Watson answered that question by posting a picture with his son, Caleb, and Day’s son, Dash, at the movies. No word on what they saw.
Where’s the Beef: Other players used their down time differently Friday. For example, Andrew Johnston, a 27-year-old from England, asked his Twitter followers to help find him the best barbeque restaurant in Pittsburgh. Some background is in order here: Johnston’s nickname is “Beef,” and his, ahem, build fits the nickname. Earlier in the week, he said he’d be “drunk for a week,” if he won the U.S. Open. Go Beef.
You’re outta here: Peter Hanson was disqualified from the tournament for signing an incorrect scorecard. Hanson opened with a round of 77 and appeared to shoot a round of 75 in the second round before the imperfection on his card was called to attention.
Shot of the day: Angel Cabrera, the 2007 U.S. Open champion at Oakmont, looked to be in trouble on the par-4 ninth hole when his second shot came up 45 yards short of the green. No worries, though, as the Argentine’s chip shot bounced twice, then skipped into the hole for a birdie.
Outfit of the day: That has to go to Billy Horschel, who paired a standard white shirt, white hat and white shoes … with a pair of flower pants that would make John Daly proud. What are flower pants, you ask? Exactly what they sound like – dark blue pants emblazoned with bright red, yellow and white flowers.
Up next: Players who started their second round but did not finish it will resume play at 7:15 a.m. Saturday. Those who have yet to start the second round will tee of at 7 a.m. Once that’s complete, a cut to the top 60 and ties and will be made and the third round will begin.