Thursday , February 19, 2015

Opening Round 69 For Perez At Riviera

Pat Perez is bringing some of that Monterey mojo south, riding a recent T4th finish at Pebble Beach into a strong opening round at Riviera for the Northern Trust Open—two-under and T12th by day’s end. 

Perez got off to a strong start on Thursday, birdying two of the first three holes. Opening with a 309-yard drive on No. 1—a par-five—Perez hit his second shot 189 yards to the right rough and stuck his third shot three feet from the hole for the easy tap-in. 

After a par on No. 2, Perez hit his drive 307 yards to the right rough and punched his second shot 139 yards to the right rough, where he followed up with a 30-yard chip-in for three. 

After going par-par, Perez came strong with another birdie on the par-three sixth, hitting his tee shot 204 yards and leaving a ten-footer for two. From there Perez carded three consecutive pars, including a clutch seven-footer on No. 9, leaving him three-under at the turn. 

The day’s lone blemish came on the brutal par-four tenth, where Perez hit his tee shoot 225 yards to the right fairway and his second shot 88 yards to the left rear green side bunker.

On his first attempt out of the bunker, Perez’s ball hit the lip and rolled back down into his shoe print. His second try found the green and he was left with a 23-footer for bogey, eventually knocking down a two-footer for six. 

As has happened often this season, Perez immediately bounced back—in this case, birdying the par-five eleventh.

After hitting his tee shot 291 yards to the left fairway, Perez stuck his second shot 284 tads and 40 feet from the hole. A potential eagle putt came up three feet short, but Perez knocked down the birdie and got back to minus-two on the day. 

From there, a par-fest as Perez knocked down seven in a row. While some birdie opportunities didn’t come to fruition, some key par saves kept the round intact. Perez knocked down a ten-footer on the par-four fifteenth and a key four-footer on No. 18, closing the day with a strong 69. 

Perez averaged 281.5 yards driving distance on the day, 64.29 in driving accuracy percentage and 55.56-percent in greens in regulation. 

Friday’s tee time is set for 11:41 a.m. PT, where Perez will again be paired with Ricky Barnes and Bernd Wiesberger, going off of No. 10. 

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