2010 Shell Houston Open: Reflections from the Tournament's First Round

Todd KaufmannSenior Writer IApril 2, 2010

PACIFIC PALISADES, CA - FEBRUARY 06:  Kevin Stadler watches his tee shot on the fourth hole during the third round of the Northern Trust Open at Riviera Country Club on February 6, 2010 in Pacific Palisades, California.  (Photo by Stephen Dunn/Getty Images)
Stephen Dunn/Getty Images

There has been a walrus sighting in Houston—well, at least the walrus' son.

Kevin Stadler, son of longtime PGA player Craig Stadler, finished the day tied—with Australian Cameron Percy—for the lead at the Shell Houston Open at five-under par 67.

Cameron who? Yes, Cameron Percy, the Australian who has only made two cuts in the seven tournaments he's entered. His best finish was 46th place at the Pebble Beach National Pro-Am.

Percy was two shots back of Stadler, then birdied 16 and 17 to tie for the lead going into the clubhouse.

Things I Expected

There are some big names lurking just behind the two leaders going into the second round of the tournament tomorrow.

Anthony Kim (-4), Phil Mickelson (-3), Padraig Harrington (-3), Lee Westwood (-3), and Justin Leonard (-3) are all within striking distance of the lead after the opening round. 

You have the feeling that one of these guys will hang around all four rounds and either just stay close enough to make his move on Sunday or take complete control of this tournament.

Things I Didn't Expect

Vijay Singh played just nine holes of the tournament before walking off the course and withdrawing from the remaining three days with a back injury—the same injury that forced him to withdraw from the Transitions Championship and the Arnold Palmer Invitational.

“I think it’s the recurrence,” Singh told the press afterwards. “It’s not as bad as what it was in Tampa, but I think if I kept going, it was going to go that way.”

If you had told me that Kevin Stadler and a virtual unknown in Cameron Percy would lead after the first round, I never would have believed it. Stadler was at six-under before ending the day with a bogey to fall back to five-under par.

What To Expect in the Second Round

One word: Weather. There's a storm system expected to move in mid-morning tomorrow—and it could remain for at least a few hours, delaying most of the tee times expected around noon and 1 p.m.

Once the tournament gets back under way, we'll have to see what the wind and the wet course does to those who are either leading or just a few shots back.

Players Who Could Make a Move

Look no further than the big names lurking just behind Stadler and Percy. The two that I expect to make a move up the leaderboard are Kim and Mickelson—but expect Harrington not to be too far behind.


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