CARMEL, Ind. (AP) — U.S. Open champion Dustin Johnson doesn’t care about the physics behind his new putter. Seeing more putts drop is enough for him.
Johnson made two eagles in a span of seven holes, shot 31 on the back nine and set the course record at Crooked Stick on Friday with a 9-under 63 that gave him a share of the lead with Roberto Castro in the BMW Championship.
Johnson didn’t even know he set the course record until Tony Pancake, the golf director at Crooked Stick, congratulated him on the way to the clubhouse.
Castro was the first player to reach 14-under 130 on the rain-softened course. He kept bogeys off his card, rolled in a pair of 30-foot putts and had another 65 in his last-minute bid to get to the Tour Championship at East Lake, just 15 minutes from his house.
Castro is at No. 53 in the FedEx Cup and only the top 30 make it to the FedEx Cup finale at East Lake and a shot at the $10 million bonus.
Paul Casey, who had the 54-hole lead last week at the TPC Boston until finishing two shots behind Rory McIlroy, had a 66 and was three shots behind.
Johnson has one of the most consistent years with 12 finishes in the top 10, along with victories in the U.S. Open and a World Golf Championship at Firestone. Even so, frustration began to set in when the putts stopped falling, so he switched to the TaylorMade Spider.
Johnson holed a bunker shot for eagle on No. 9, narrowly missed a 45-foot eagle putt on the 11th hole and then surged into the lead. He made a 10-foot birdie putt on the par-3 13th, rolled in a 30-foot birdie putt on the next hole and then made an eagle putt from 25 feet on the 15th.
BEACHWOOD, Ohio (AP) — Zack Sucher topped the DAP Championship leaderboard at 7 under when second-round play was suspended because of darkness in the Web.com Tour Finals opener.
Sucher bogeyed the par-5 16th hole and was playing the par-3 17th at Canterbury when play was stopped. The 29-year-old former UAB player, 38th on the Web.com Tour money list, finished the rain-delayed first round with a 65 on Friday morning.
Bryson DeChambeau was a stroke back along with Stuart Appleby, Rory Sabbatini, Whee Kim, Scott Harrington and Cameron Percy. DeChambeau, the 22-year-old former SMU player who swept the 2015 NCAA and U.S. Amateur titles, finished off a 70 in fading light. He birdied his seventh hole to reach 9 under, then bogeyed three of the next four holes. Percy shot 66, Sabbatini, Kim and Harrington 67, and Appleby 68.
John Peterson was 5 under with five holes to play.
The four-event series features the top 75 players from the Web.com Tour money list, Nos. 126-200 in the PGA Tour’s FedEx Cup standings and non-members such as DeChambeau who earned enough money to have placed in the top 200 had they been eligible.
The top 25 players on the Web.com Tour regular-season money list earned PGA Tour cards. They are competing against each other for tour priority, with regular-season earnings counting in their totals. The other players are fighting for 25 cards based on series earnings.
SPIJK, Netherlands (AP) — Austria’s Bernd Wiesberger shot his second straight 5-under 66 to take a one-stroke lead in the KLM Open.
Dutchman Joost Luiten, the 2013 winner, was a stroke back along with England’s Mark Foster and Italy’s Nino Bertasio. Luiten had a 64 at The Dutch. Foster shot 66, and Bertasio 67.