Scottie Scheffler among the 8 players tied for the top of the Charles Schwab Classic leaderboard after a 4-under 66


FORT WORTH, Texas — Scottie Scheffler did something last weekend he rarely does: watch a golf tournament at home after missing a cut. The No. 1 player in the world is back on the field and tied for the top of a crowded leaderboard in Colonial.

Scheffler was among eight players to shoot 4-under 66s Thursday at the Charles Schwab Classic. But he was the only one in that group without a bogey, recovering from the failed cut of him at the PGA Championship.

Cam Davis, Beau Hossler, Chris Kirk, Patrick Reed, Webb Simpson, Nick Taylor and Harold Varner III also shot 66s. Another seven were shot back.


“The course is playing harder than in a typical year here. Yeah, I felt like I did a pretty good job of handling myself on the golf course,” Scheffler said. “Any time you don’t bogey, it’s going to be a good round.”

Those who went out on the morning swell, including Scheffler, Reed, Simpson and Varner, started with virtually no wind and cooler conditions. The wind picked up later in its rounds and gusts to 20 mph throughout the afternoon.

Colonial defending champion Jason Kokrak and Jordan Spieth, the 2016 winner who became runner-up for the third time last year, shot 69.

Many players wore ribbons on their caps to show support for the community of Uvalde, Texas, about 350 miles south of the field, where 19 students and two teachers were killed in a shooting at an elementary school Tuesday.

Reed birdied all four par 3s at Colonial, including a 237-yard 64-foot shot from the green bunker into the cup on the fourth hole. His only bogey came on his last hole, after missing the fairway on the ninth right-hander with a 400-yard dogleg.

In his previous 11 starts in the last four months, Reed missed four cuts and finished no better than 26th. He has dropped to 38th in the World Golf Rankings: he was 9th at Colonial last year.

“It feels good to get a number,” Reed said of his 66. “Honestly, I feel like there have been too many days where I’ve done a lot of things really well, it’s just that the number hasn’t really reflected.” But the best thing about a season is that it is a season. You have a lot of time left.”

Varner had four bogeys, countering those with six birdies and an eagle at the 634-yard 11th hole, where he had a 330-yard drive and a 305-yard approach to the green for a 5-foot putt. That came after a 55-foot birdie chip-in on No. 10 and a 10-foot birdie putt on No. 12, but he bogeyed two of the next three holes.

Buoyed by his eagle mark from 95 yards on the par-4 12th hole, Taylor was five under and still a shot ahead in the lead until his bogey at No. 18. The world’s 244th-ranked player hit his last advance of the day to the right, and his second shot ended up on a wagon road.

Simpson followed up his only bogeys, on both front par 3s, immediately with birdies. That included a 6½-foot closing birdie putt on No. 9 after his tee shot on No. 8 put him in a deep greenside bunker with only his head and shoulders visible when he came out. fired.

“Apart from those two holes, it was really solid,” Simpson said. “I had some good ups and downs, but this is the kind of Colonial I love, where the rough is up and the wind blows.”

Hossler took his share of the lead with an eagle 2 from 135 yards and finished on the ninth hole. He also had another eagle from 65 yards on the par 4 sixth. His two eagles came after bogeys on his previous hole.

Scheffler played PGA Championship winner Justin Thomas on Thursday, the fifth player in the world to post a 71.

Thomas won the PGA in a three-hole aggregate playoff over Will Zalatoris, who started 72 at Colonial. Zalatoris lives in the Dallas area like Scheffler and Spieth.

Mito Pereira shot a par 70 at Colonial, four days after he lost the PGA lead and missed the playoff with Thomas and Zalatoris due to a double bogey on the 72nd hole at Southern Hills.

Scheffler did not officially commit to playing Colonial until after his premature departure from the PGA. He watched the rest of the PGA Championship on television after the approximately 300-mile drive home from Tulsa, Oklahoma.

“Usually I never watch golf, but it was nice. I chilled all Saturday and Sunday I went out and practiced, just put the tournament on my phone and watched it,” Scheffler said. “Will was very close and JT is also a good friend of mine, and my old caddy was Mito’s caddy… He had a lot of different guys that he wanted to see, and it was fun.”