Harris English shoots 62 to take 2-shot lead in Memphis

Aug 5, 2021, 2:53 AM | Updated: 7:13 pm

MEMPHIS, Tenn. (AP) — Harris English shot an 8-under 62 on Thursday to match his lowest PGA Tour score and take the first-round lead in the FedEx St. Jude Invitational.

The 2013 winner at TPC Southwind, English had a two-stroke lead over Jim Herman, Carlos Ortiz, Ian Poulter and Matthew Wolff, with Bryson DeChambeau, Scottie Scheffler and Marc Leishman another shot back at 65.

“I just love this place,” English said. “From the time I first came here in 2013, it’s been one of my favorite places to play.”

DeChambeau returned to competition after missing the Tokyo Olympics because of a positive test for COVID-19.

The 32-year-old English birdied the first four holes — making a 27-foot putt on the par-4 second — and added birdies on Nos. 6, 7 and 9 to match the course front-nine mark of 7-under 28. The 28 also is English’s career-low for nine holes.

“This is just one of those courses that suits (my) eye,” English said. “I feel like it plays the game that I like to play. More strategy, get the ball in the fairway. I love small greens and these greens don’t have a whole lot of humps and bumps in them. They’re very flat and I feel like I can make a lot of putts out here.”

Ahead by two strokes after nine holes, he encountered difficulty to the start the back nine. He bogeyed Nos. 10 and 12 to fall out of the lead. But he recovered on the final few holes. He closed with birdies at 15, 16 and 18. He hit his approach at 18 inside 5 feet and sank the putt.

“I’m just happy with the way I fought back,” English said.

The strong start was a continuation of what has been a solid season for English. Of his four PGA Tour victories, two have come this season: the Sentry Tournament of Champions in January in Hawaii and the Travelers Championship in June in Connecticut. He finished third at the U.S. Open.

English has won two of the four times he has led or shared the lead after an opening round.

Ortiz, who played bogey-free, moved up the leaderboard with birdies at Nos. 15 and 16. Wolff also birdied 15 and 16 and said “everything is starting to fall in place” for him.

Herman, seeking the fourth PGA Tour victory of his career, is in contention after a difficult mid-season stretch in which he missed eight of 10 cuts. After birdies on 16 and 17, he briefly tied English for the lead at 6 under. Herman’s birdie putt on 17 was from 31 feet.

“I can’t pinpoint any one thing,” Herman said. “I was just driving the ball well and hitting some putts.”

DeChambeau was encouraged by his start. He expressed to the media Wednesday he didn’t expect to be much of a factor this week. That sentiment changed Thursday.

“I’m looking forward to the rest of the weekend,” he said. “I feel like I can be there to win on Sunday.”

British Open champion Collin Morikawa and defending FedEx St. Jude Invitational champion Justin Thomas shot 67s. Second-ranked Dustin Johnson and Olympic gold medalist Xander Schauffele were at 69.

Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

AP

FILE - NASCAR Cup Series driver Joey Logano speaks during the NASCAR Championship media day, Thursd...
Associated Press

Logano celebates 2nd NASCAR Cup title already wanting 3rd

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Joey Logano has a simple target for the future even as he celebrates his 2022 NASCAR Cup championship. Add yet another. Logano this season joined Kyle Busch as the only active NASCAR drivers with multiple Cup series titles, adding to the first Cup championship he won in 2018. Being the only […]
15 hours ago
Japan's Ritsu Doan celebrates scoring his side's first goal during a World Cup group E soccer match...
Associated Press

AP PHOTOS: World Cup highlights from Day 12

Highlights from the 12th day of the World Cup in Qatar on Thursday. ___ AP World Cup coverage: https://apnews.com/hub/world-cup and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.
2 days ago
Germany's Serge Gnabry scores his side's opening goal during the World Cup group E soccer match bet...
Associated Press

Germany out of World Cup despite 4-2 win over Costa Rica

AL KHOR, Qatar (AP) — Germany was eliminated from the group stage of the World Cup for the second tournament in a row. The four-time champions beat Costa Rica 4-2 Thursday but it wasn’t enough to reach the round of 16. Japan’s 2-1 victory over Spain in the other group game allowed both of those […]
2 days ago
Japan's Ao Tanaka, second right, heads the ball to score his side's second goal during the World Cu...
Associated Press

Japan beats Spain 2-1 as both teams advance at World Cup

DOHA, Qatar (AP) — Same stadium. Same result. Similar shocking victory for Japan at the World Cup. After beating Germany in the team’s opener, Japan worked its way into the round of 16 of the World Cup on Thursday by defeating Spain 2-1 — the same score as last week. Spain also advanced despite the […]
2 days ago
Morocco fans attend the World Cup group F soccer match between Canada and Morocco at the Al Thumama...
Associated Press

Arabs unite in celebration as Morocco advances in World Cup

DOHA, Qatar (AP) — First Qatar was out, exiting the World Cup with the worst record of a host country. Then the Saudi national team’s run ended, despite a historic upset against Argentina last week. Finally Tunisia was eliminated, after a dramatic victory against already-qualified France. Now, at the first World Cup ever to be […]
2 days ago
FILE - NASCAR Xfinity Series auto racing driver Ty Gibbs speaks during the NASCAR Championship medi...
Associated Press

Ty Gibbs declines to discuss sudden death of his father

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Ty Gibbs on Thursday declined to discuss the death of his father, which occurred just hours after the young NASCAR driver clinched the Xfinity Series championship last month. Gibbs was asked about his grandfather, Hall of Famer Joe Gibbs, telling the employees at Joe Gibbs Racing they all had to move […]
2 days ago
Harris English shoots 62 to take 2-shot lead in Memphis