Memorial Tournament 2022: Cam Smith Among Co-Leaders After Opening Round

Joseph Zucker@@JosephZuckerFeatured Columnist IVJune 2, 2022

DUBLIN, OHIO - JUNE 02: Cameron Smith of Australia walks on the 13th green during the first round of the Memorial Tournament presented by Workday at Muirfield Village Golf Club on June 2, 2022 in Dublin, Ohio. (Photo by Ben Jared/PGA TOUR via Getty Images)
Ben Jared/PGA TOUR via Getty Images

Through the first round, there's plenty of company atop the leaderboard at the Memorial Tournament at Muirfield Village Golf Club in Dublin, Ohio.

Cameron Young, Luke List, Cameron Smith, K.H. Lee, Davis Riley and Mackenzie Hughes are all tied for the lead at five under. Will Zalatoris, Denny McCarthy, Sahith Theegala and Wyndham Clark are tied for seventh at four under.

Hughes grabbed a share of first in dramatic fashion. He holed out from the fringe on his final hole.


Tying the lead at the last.<a href="https://twitter.com/MacHughesGolf?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@MacHughesGolf</a> chips in for birdie for a first round 67 <a href="https://twitter.com/MemorialGolf?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@MemorialGolf</a> <a href="https://t.co/KOmRDUoNNd">pic.twitter.com/KOmRDUoNNd</a>

2022 Memorial Leaderboard—First Round

T1. Cameron Young (-5)

T1. Luke List (-5)

T1. Cameron Smith (-5)

T1. K.H. Lee (-5)

T1. Mackenzie Hughes (-5)

T1. Davis Riley (-5)

T7. Will Zalatoris (-4)

T7. Denny McCarthy (-4)

T7. Sahith Theegala (-4)

T7. Wyndham Clark (-4)

Full leaderboard is available at the PGA Tour's official website

Smith has been excellent this season, earning two wins and five top-10 finishes in his first 11 PGA Tour events, and a third victory could beckon this weekend.

The Australian was three under when he made the turn thanks to birdies on the 11th, 13th and 15th holes. He then had an eventful back nine that included four birdies and two bogeys. An 18-foot birdie putt on No. 9 put him into a tie for first before he headed to the clubhouse.


Saucy stuff from Cameron Smith 🤌 <a href="https://t.co/Csvcfwl9wT">pic.twitter.com/Csvcfwl9wT</a>


Long birdie at the last for Cameron Smith.<br><br>He joins the leaders at -5. <a href="https://t.co/BWmZErmOsF">pic.twitter.com/BWmZErmOsF</a>

Despite a nice showing so far, Young might be slightly disappointed he didn't do more.

The PGA Tour rookie was already at five under halfway through the round.


Cameron Young jumps out to a two-shot lead <a href="https://twitter.com/MemorialGolf?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@MemorialGolf</a> <a href="https://t.co/o7Fb37Ziui">pic.twitter.com/o7Fb37Ziui</a>

But Young bogeyed Nos. 1 and 6 to cancel out some of his progress. He rebounded with birdies on Nos. 7 and 9—the latter of which required a 28-foot putt to connect.

"I just hit a bunch of good shots early and made kind of the crucial little saves to kind of keep that momentum going with some pars," Young said of his round. "The eagle in the middle was obviously a nice little bonus."

Even more so than Young, Corey Conners might feel he squandered a golden opportunity.

Conners was five under through his first six holes. Rather than whether he'd be tied for the lead, the question seemed to center around the margin by which he'd be leading through 18 holes.

Instead, Conners' momentum came to an abrupt halt. A bogey on No. 17 dropped him to four under before the turn, and he fell further with bogeys on the first and third holes.

A two-shot deficit is far from insurmountable, but those mistakes could prove costly with as tightly packed as the Memorial leaderboard is.

Last year, Jon Rahm was forced to withdraw from the Memorial after testing positive for COVID-19. He had been up six shots through three rounds when he exited. There has already been a notable dismissal this year, albeit under less consequential circumstances.

PGA Tour rules officials disqualified Hideki Matsuyama because of an equipment violation.


Hideki Matsuyama has been disqualified from <a href="https://twitter.com/MemorialGolf?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@MemorialGolf</a> for a non-conforming club (rule 4.1a). <a href="https://t.co/7Z1HHH0LwG">pic.twitter.com/7Z1HHH0LwG</a>

Jonathan Wall @jonathanrwall

Hideki Matsuyama gets DQ’d for a marking on the face of his fairway wood. <br><br>The 📸 🐐 <a href="https://twitter.com/gdm43pga?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@gdm43pga</a> managed to snap this one of Hideki’s at Muirfield. Gotta assume the white areas, which were likely meant to frame the face and center, caused the DQ. Wild stuff. <a href="https://t.co/Ek4Oj1xeH9">pic.twitter.com/Ek4Oj1xeH9</a>

Matsuyama had gotten off to a slow start, going three over on the front nine. He at least stuck around long enough to provide one of Thursday's most improbable shots:


Saved by the bridge 😅 <a href="https://t.co/COEgxvobdZ">pic.twitter.com/COEgxvobdZ</a>

Rahm is three shots off the pace he set in 2021. Last summer, he opened with a three-under 69 in the first round of the Memorial and only managed an even-par 72 on Thursday.

Defending champion Patrick Cantlay is in the same position, with he and Rahm among those tied for 48th. Considering two over was the cut line one year ago, either star could find himself in some danger Friday.

Things aren't looking good for Bryson DeChambeau in his first tournament back since the Masters.

A 39-foot birdie putt on No. 2 appeared to be a nice omen for the 2020 U.S. Open champion.


From 39 feet 🕳<a href="https://twitter.com/b_dechambeau?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@B_DeChambeau</a> is right back to it. <a href="https://t.co/b04XSWgPqw">pic.twitter.com/b04XSWgPqw</a>

The back nine proved to be disastrous for DeChambeau, though, and left him with an uphill battle to make the cut. He double-bogeyed No. 12 and closed out with three more bogeys over his last five holes.

Some rust was to be expected, and there's still time for DeChambeau to get back to his usual self ahead of the U.S. Open.

The Memorial will resume at 7 a.m. ET on Friday. The threesome of Jhonattan Vegas, Danny Lee and Patrick Rodgers will get started on No. 1 as Young, Camilo Villegas and Scott Stallings tee off at No. 10.