CHARLOTTE, N.C. - Kevin Kisner and Thorbjorn Olesen lead the way at the PGA Championship at Quail Hollow, where a host of big names lurk just behind them. Here's where things stand through 18 holes at the year's final major:
Leaderboard: Thorbjorn Olesen (-4), Kevin Kisner (-4), Grayson Murray (-3), Gary Woodland (-3), Brooks Koepka (-3), Chris Stroud (-3), D.A. Points (-3), Tony Finau (-2), Jim Herman (-2), Patrick Reed (-2), Paul Casey (-2), Bud Cauley (-2), Rickie Fowler (-2), Brian Harman (-2)
What it means: Soft fairways and firm greens made for difficult scoring conditions on Day 1, as only 24 of the 156 players in the field broke 70, and plenty of big names turned in big scores. Olesen and Kisner are on top but the names that will grab the majority of the attention are Koepka, Reed, Fowler, Hideki Matsuyama, Jason Day, Dustin Johnson and Jon Rahm, who are all under par and in the early mix. A bit further down the board, Rory McIlroy and Jordan Spieth both signed for 1-over 71, as the former looks to win his third PGA and the latter looks to complete the career Grand Slam.
Round of the day: A four-time European Tour winner who earlier this year partnered with fellow Dane Lucas Bjerregaard to win the inaugural GolfSixes, Olesen made six birdies, including one at the difficult home hole, to make it to 4-under 67. Kisner captured his second PGA Tour title earlier this year at Colonial, and just like Olesen, he made six birdies including his final one at 18 to get in the clubhouse at minus-4.
Best of the rest: Murray, Woodland, Koepka, Stroud and Points all turned in 3-under 67. Of the group, only Stroud, the winner of last weeks' Barracuda Championship and the last man in the field, stayed bogey-free.
Biggest disappointments: Five-time major winner and 2005 PGA champion Phil Mickelson floundered with a birdieless 8-over 79. Other notables to struggle on Day 1 included Quail Hollow member Webb Simpson (+5), Matthew Fitzpatrick (+5), Justin Rose (+5), Bubba Watson (+6), Thomas Pieters (+8), Si Woo Kim (+8), and defending champion Jimmy Walker (+10). Kim, The Players champion, withdrew after his round, citing a back injury.
Shot of the day: There’s been some commentary amongst players about the design and the firmness of the fourth green, but Joost Luiten found out how to stop the ball from bouncing over the green by bouncing it into the cup. Luiten holed his tee shot from 184 at the par-3 for an ace:
Quote of the day: "[My ball striking] was good today. If it stays that way - I can't putt any worse than I did today. The score won't be any higher than it was today if I'm driving the ball like today." - Spieth