Could Adam Scott run away from the rest of the field before the weekend at the PGA Championship? The Aussie has it all firing right now, and he's extended his lead to two shots and sits at 7-under for the week. He missed a short par putt on the the 17th, which is playing as Oak Hill's toughest hole, but it was the only blip in a dominant opening eight holes.
Last week at Firestone, we essentially saw the tournament come to an end on Friday afternoon when Tiger Woods posted a 61 to go ahead by 7 shots. It was over from there. This is a major championship, and with the soggy and receptive conditions, there will be players who pile up birdies and post low numbers. But given the way Scott's playing right now, it appears everyone else will be chasing on the weekend.
Scott had three birdies through his first seven holes, going off Oak Hill's back nine on Friday morning and rolling his anchored putter to near perfection. The 2013 Masters champ is almost unbeatable when he has that club in form. He's already one of the best drivers in the world, and is thought to have the best swing in the game. If the putter is going, as it is so far this week, everyone will be chasing him over the final 54 holes. The putter has not only added red numbers for Scott, but been huge saving pars up on the green, particularly at the 18th Thursday night. The missed bunny on No. 17 may give him pause, but on Thursday he steadied things after his only bogey of the day.
The hardest stretch on the course is Oak Hill's two finishing holes, so one dropped shot there is not the worst thing in the world. He has just two bogeys through his first 26 holes. He'll come into the clubhouse playing the front nine, which is where he went on that five straight birdies streak Thursday that pushed him to the top of the board. We've seen Scott slip up on Sunday before, including last month at the British when he bogeyed four straight holes on the back nine (for the second straight year at that event). But with a major win already under his belt, he seems much more comfortable and this course and its greens are not playing anything like Muirfield.
Tiger Woods will not tee off until later afternoon, but by the time he gets to the first tee box, Scott may have already wiped out his chances at a 15th major. Here's a current snapshot of the leaderboard and some notables out in the morning with Scott rolling ahead:
|2||Jim Furyk||-5||01:55:00 PM|
|T3||David Hearn||-4||12:50 pm *|
|T7||Robert Garrigus||-3||12:35:00 PM|
|T7||Paul Casey||-3||12:45:00 PM|
|T7||Matt Kuchar||-3||01:05:00 PM|
|T7||Marcus Fraser||-3||1:30 pm *|