GOLF

Utah Locals Remain In Contention Following First Round Of Utah Championship

Aug 5, 2021, 8:38 PM
Patrick Fishburn plays his shot on the 11th tee during the third round of the MGM Resorts Champions...
Patrick Fishburn plays his shot on the 11th tee during the third round of the MGM Resorts Championship at Paiute at the Las Vegas Paiute Golf Resort on April 17, 2021 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by David Becker/Getty Images)
(Photo by David Becker/Getty Images)

SALT LAKE CITY, Utah – The Utah Championship’s first-round has concluded with a pair of Americans tied atop the leaderboard after firing an eight-under-par opening round at Oakridge Country Club in Farmington, Utah.

Joshua Creel and Mark Blakefield sit atop the leaderboard following the first round after carding a pair of 63’s gifting them a one-shot lead on the field with three rounds remaining.

Local Showing

A trio of locals is in the field, headlined by Patrick Fishburn and Daniel Summerhays, who both shot three-under-par, 68, and are currently in a tie for 43rd. The final Utahn in the field is Rhett Rasmussen who cared an even-par round after qualifying for the tournament earlier in the week at the Monday Qualifier at Talons Cove when he carded an eight-under-par round.

The stakes are high with just four Korn Ferry Tour events remaining on the 2020/21 calendar year as Fishburn currently sits 82nd in the rankings. He needs to be 75th or better to qualify for the KFT finals and ultimately finish in the top 25 if he hopes to secure a PGA Tour card for next season.

Summerhays is just getting his professional career back on track after retiring less than a year ago to pursue a career in teaching and coaching at nearby Davis High School. The golf bug was too much for Summerhays to handle, it seems, as his professional golf career has been given a second life with the news of his return.

Rasmussen hopes to make some noise on the Korn Ferry Tour after qualifying earlier in the week. Currently, Rasmussen plays his gold on the Forme Tour, a small tour created earlier this year by the PGA Tour in response to COVID-19 pandemic-related restrictions on travel between the United States and Canada. A big showing at the Utah Championship could gift Rasmussen a lifeline on the Korn Ferry Tour in the immediate future.

Championship Still In Sight

All three local players are still in contention, however, they will all require a low second round to solidify making the cut and ensure striking distance is maintained as the tournament enters the weekend.

Fans are back in attendance for the first time in two years after the global pandemic eliminated fans from attending in 2020. For those fans unable to attend, the Golf Channel will air a live stream via the NBC Sports app or on GolfChannel.com from 3-6 p.m.

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