Mackenzie Hughes and Corey Conners light billboards

by | Nov 19, 2021 | Golf Clubs

NS. SIMONS ISLAND, Georgia – The Great White North was well represented in the first round of the RSM Classic on Thursday when Canadians Mackenzie Hughes and Corey Conners lit the scoreboards in lots of red.

Conners, whose wife Malory gave birth to the couple’s first child, a girl, Rice, last week, hit a career low for consecutive birdies, finishing the Seaside Course 8 under 62 to sit two strokes ahead of the lead after the first round of the RSM Classic on Thursday at the calm Sea Island Golf Club.

Hughes, who played the Plantation Course, shot a 9-under 63 while Sebastian Munoz set the pace with a 60 on the Seaside Course. Hughes is no stranger to these parts; he shot 61 in the first round en route to winning his only PGA Tour title at the 2016 RSM Classic.

Zach Johnson shot 61 on the Seaside Course and Scott Stallings and Chez Reavie joined Hughes at 63 on the Plantation Course.

“It was a bit hot and cold here. I was obviously very hot, and I had a couple of missed cuts here, too, ”said Hughes. “The weather can be a big factor and what type of golf course you get into the wind on which day. I felt like I’ve played well here over the years and I’ve always felt good.

“It was nice to see a nice low score at the beginning. I love coming to Sea Island and it will always be one of my favorite stops. “

Nobody was hotter at any time on Thursday than Conners, whose only Tour title was won at the 2019 Valero Texas Open. From the fifth he made six consecutive birdies, the longest of which came from 5 feet.

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“It’s pretty comfortable, can’t lie,” Conners said of his birdie flash. “I hit the ball very, very well and it’s definitely fun. I drove it on the fairway and put some short clubs in the holes and was able to hit them hard.

“It always feels good. It felt pretty easy. I felt like my ball was really strong today, I often hit it close. And I wasn’t disappointed with the score at all, but I had a lot of very tight calls on some other birdie putts that could have gone in, but a fantastic round and, yes, pretty lucky. “

He is excited to be a father.

“It was amazing,” he said of the birth. “My wife and baby are doing great. It’s kind of a last minute addition to come here so I think being here is a bonus. My wife is doing really well. She has a family at home helping her and she’s a saint for me to come here and play and I look forward to having fun the rest of the week and then being a dad for a while.

“Yeah, I slept a little better than (Malory) this week. Feel for her, but she is great and both cheer me on. “

Conditions are likely to stiffen for round two on Friday as strong winds are expected. With that in mind, many of the players knew the first round was the day it went down.

“I saw the forecast today and for the next few days and thought that this would be a day when there would be a result. You know, you never know you’re going to shoot 9 under, but I definitely tried to be a little more aggressive with my mindset today, ”said Hughes. “Just one of those days when a lot of things worked really well. As a golfer you always say: Wow, it could have been really low. It was one of those days when it could have been very, very low, but I’m very excited about the start. “

Check the route book: Sea Island’s Seaside Course for the RSM Classic on the PGA Tour

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