Austin Eckroat

Oklahoma State’s Austin Eckroat, seen here at the NCAA Golf Championships, finished one-over-par during his opening round at the U.S. Open on Thursday.

Edmond North High School graduate and Oklahoma State University sophomore Austin Eckroat finished one-over-par during his opening round in the U.S. Open. 

Playing in the major at Pebble Beach, Eckroat’s early-afternoon tee-time was relatively uneventful — outside of a bumpy, five-hole stretch from holes five through nine. 

There, Eckroat made his first non-par of the afternoon when he bogeyed the par-3 fifth hole. Edmond’s Eckroat immediately dropped back to even on the day, though, hitting a four-stroke birdie on the par-5 sixth hole. 

After an even-keel seventh, another bogey struck Eckroat on the eighth hole — a hole that was rated as one of the most difficult on the course. After that, on nine, another bogey bumped Eckroat to two over. 

But Eckroat settled in. Playing across the final nine holes, he would not record another bogey on the day. Instead, he’d finish one-under-par across the back-nine. He birdied a par-4 fifteenth hole, and would record par on all eight of the other boxes on the final half of his round. 

The opening round leaves him tied at 60th on the scoreboard. A crucial spot in one of the harsher cuts — the U.S. Open cut will take the top-60 golfers on the leaderboard, including ties, into Saturday and Sunday’s third and final rounds. Eckroat must maintain his standing or improve somewhat if he wishes to continue on past Friday’s second round. 

Eckroat’s second round will begin Friday morning at 7:18 a.m., pacific standard time, where he sits grouped with Alex Noren and Charles Howell III. 

Former Oklahoma State University golfer Rickie Fowler currently sits atop the leaderboard, clumped in a four-way tie at the leading five-under-par. Included in the leading bulge is Xander Schaeffele, Lous Oosthuizen and Aaron Wise. 

Oosthuizen is the last of the quartet to tee off Friday, with his round beginning on hole No. 1 at 2:20 p.m.