Jordan Spieth is making his ninth appearance in the Charles Schwab Challenge. He’s won once (2016), never missed the cut and only three times in 32 previous rounds shot over par.
Meanwhile, he’s shot 65 on seven occasions and 64 once. And, now, he has a 63 to his credit.
Spieth made seven birdies and no bogeys on Thursday at par-70 Colonial Country Club to take the early lead in Ft. Worth, Texas.
“Yeah, it's hard to go any lower,” he said after his round. “Made some putts, got started on the first hole today, that one goes in, and that's what I talked about before the tournament. If I could get a couple to go in early in the first round and the confidence and the work I've been doing on my stroke the last few days, which is a somewhat significant change in a stroke feel, I thought that would exude just a little bit of confidence into the rest of the round on greens where I've been very successful on before.”
Beginning on the par-4 10th, Spieth rolled in a 12-footer for birdie and then went to 2 under with a 10-footer at the 12th. Overall, he made 102 feet worth of putts in the opening round, none of which occurred on the par-3 eighth, his 17th, where he chipped in for birdie.
Spieth is coming off a tie for 30th at the PGA Championship, where he was near the bottom of the field, among those who made the cut, in strokes gained: putting.
While he didn’t take a deep dive into the changes he and coach Cameron McCormick made, Spieth did offer up that the two worked on his “stroke feel.”
“I just needed to do a bit of adjustment in my stroke feel on some bad tendencies I got into. Cameron did some really good research with some of the devices he has to do that with, some of the technology, and was able to really pinpoint a way to get a stroke feel that left me just a little more comfortable over it, to feel like I could flush it through,” Spieth said.
“I was maybe a foot short on speed the last couple weeks on a lot of putts and hit a lot of lips because of that, and it wasn't just adjusting to speed, a lot of that was in the actual stroke confidence. It was closer today.”
Spieth was +4.307 in strokes gained: putting in Round 1 at Colonial, second among the early wave and first on the leaderboard.