Number of strokes under par that American Troy Merritt stood after his 62 opened a one-stroke lead Thursday in the Northern Trust in Jersey City, N.J. Merritt, 33, a two-time winner on the PGA Tour, played bogey-free golf to match the course record at Liberty National Golf Club in the first event of the FedEx Cup playoffs. Merritt was diagnosed with thoracic outlet syndrome last year and in January underwent surgery to remove the top rib on his left side. He missed two months of competition. Merritt entered the week at No. 72 in the FedEx Cup standings. The top 70 will advance to next week’s BMW Championship at Medinah (Ill.) Country Club. American Dustin Johnson held solo second at 63, with American Kevin Kisner and Spain’s Jon Rahm tied for third at 64. Tiger Woods, in his first start since missing the cut three weeks ago at the British Open, shot 75 (scores).
Score for American Robby Shelton, who posted a bogey-free 10-under round to lead the Korn Ferry Tour’s WinCo Foods Portland Open in North Plains, Ore. Shelton, 23, already has won twice this season, his second on the developmental tour, but he entered the first round at Pumpkin Ridge Golf Club’s Witch Hollow Course having missed cuts in his two previous starts. Shelton ranks second on the Korn Ferry Tour points list and has locked up a PGA Tour card for the 2019-20 season (scores).
First-round score for co-leaders Mi Hyang Lee, Jane Park and Anne van Dam at the Ladies Scottish Open in North Berwick, Scotland. Park, an American who is looking for her first victory in her 13th season on the LPGA, South Korea’s Lee and van Dam, an LPGA rookie from the Netherlands, were 8 under after 18 holes at The Renaissance Club. The scores were season-low numbers for each co-leader. Van Dam, a four-time winner on the Ladies European Tour who leads the LPGA in driving distance at 283.97 yards, eagled two of the four par 5s (scores).