Four tied for the opening-round lead in Guadalajara
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Written by Gregory Villalobos @PGATOURLA
GUADALAJARA, Jalisco, Mexico—Carding a 6-under 65 in the morning wave, Rodolfo Cazaubón of Mexico, Ignacio Marino of Argentina, Gustavo Silva of Chile and Josh Goldenberg of the United States finished the day in a four-way tie for the opening-round lead at the Jalisco Open Guadalajara. The leaders are one shot ahead of six players who shot 66s on a warm day, partly cloudy day at Atlas Country Club, the host venue of the last full-field event of the 2022-23 PGA TOUR Latinoamérica season.
The group of players tied for fifth includes defending champion José de Jesús Rodríguez of Mexico, who went bogey-free to match his opening-round score of a year ago. Rodríguez and Ollie Osbourne had the lowest scores in the afternoon wave to join Puma Domínguez, Toni Hakula, Alexandre Rocha and Austin Squires, who recorded their 66s in the morning.
Playing in the first group off No. 1 at 6:50 a.m., Marino posted the first 65 of the day in bogey-free fashion. He birdied five of his first 10 holes and then added one last birdie, on 14. “I had a very steady round, keeping the ball in the fairway all day, which I think was the key to my round,” said the 27-year-old from Rio Cuarto, Argentina.
Birdieing four of his first six holes and then going birdie-birdie-birdie off No. 10, Goldenberg was at 7-under through 12 holes and seemed on his way to a comfortable lead. He lost his great pace with back-to-back bogeys, on Nos. 5 and 6, before getting one shot back with a birdie on 8.
“I just had an aggressive mindset today. In these tournaments I feel like you just have to make as many birdies as possible, so I was fortunate enough to get off to a good start, hit some good wedges, close on the front side and then on the back I just kept trying to do my best to give myself birdie looks. It was a fun day of golf. All parts of my game felt pretty good, and I’m excited for the rest of the week,” said the 26-year-old from Scarsdale, New York.
Goldenberg was playing with Cazaubón, who managed to match his score with an impressive birdie-birdie-birdie finish. “My tournament opening rounds have been a bit slow lately, so I focused on having a strong start today. I kept myself in position through the day, and I think I only missed one or two fairways all day. I putted extremely well and took advantage of most of my chances,” said the 33-year old from Tampico, a four-time winner in 76 PGA TOUR Latinoamérica career starts.
Silva is the only player among those sharing the lead without a guaranteed spot inside next week’s season-ending Bupa Tour Championship, a limited field event for those who finish the Jalisco Open GDL 60th or better in the Totalplay Cup standings. He currently ranks 78th and in need of a strong week to extend his season and secure playing privileges next year.
In such a position, the Chilean got the start he needed. He birdied five of his last eight holes and is currently projected to move to 15th in the Totalplay Cup standings. “Being outside the top 60, I take it as motivation. It’s a big challenge ahead the rest of this tournament, but I hope to keep battling all the way through the weekend,” said the 29-year old from Rancagua, Chile, who happened to be the odd man out last season, when he finished 61st in the race for the Totalplay Cup.
Ranked 71st this season, Domínguez is the only other player currently outside the top 60 who moved into position to make the Bupa Tour Championship field. Opening the day with a bogey, Domínguez, who turned 38 Wednesday, kept a clean card the rest of the way, making six birdies to join the tie for fifth, at 66. The San Luis, Argentina, native is currently projected to move to 50th.
The following is a look at the different performance rewards available for the players who finish the season inside the Totalplay Cup top 60:
Just as he did last year in his run to victory at this event a year ago, Mexico’s José de Jesús Rodríguez shot an opening, 5-under 66. The veteran nicknamed “Camarón”—“Shrimp”—had his five birdies on holes 4, 8, 10, 15 and 18. Rodríguez was pleased with his afternoon performance, but regretted missing a couple of short putts, including a one-footer for birdie on No. 13. “I hit the ball close all day, giving myself many chances. I putted really well in general. I missed only two greens but managed to make the up-and-down, so I had some good saves. I’m especially pleased that I didn’t make any bogeys because although I’m a player who makes many birdies, I also record many bogeys, so a clean card is something I’m trying on focus on,” said the 42-year old Korn Ferry Tour member who is back home to renew his U.S. visa.
Paired with José de Jesús Rodríguez, Canada’s Myles Creighton carded a 2-under 69 in his first official round as Totalplay Cup No. 1. The 27-year old moved to 4-under for the day after a birdie on 15 but immediately dropped a couple of shots with a double bogey on 16 and finished the day tied for 38th. This is how the players inside the Totalplay Cup top 10 started the tournament at Atlas Country Club:
|Points List Pos.||Player||Position||Score|
|1||Myles Creighton (Canada)||T38||69 (-2)|
|2||Chandler Blanchet (U.S.)||T24||68 (-3)|
|3||Walker Lee (U.S.)||T24||68 (-3)|
|4||Charlie Hillier (New Zealand)||T118||75 (+4)|
|5||Conner Godsey (U.S.)||T57||70 (-1)|
|6||Austin Hitt (U.S.)||T11||67 (-4)|
|7||Linus Lilliedahl (Sweden)||T24||68 (-3)|
|8||Toni Hakula (Finland)||T5||66 (-5)|
|9||Cristóbal Del Solar (Chile)*||--||--|
|10||Matt Ryan (U.S.)||T38||69 (-2)|
*Korn Ferry Tour player, not playing this week
With Gustavo Silva and Puma Domínguez currently projected to move inside the top 60, those who would fall outside are Thomas Lilly, who carded a 1-under 70 and is projected to drop from 60th to 62nd, and Samuel Anderson, who carded a 1-over 72 that projects him to drop from 59th to 61st. Making the cut would be the first step for those currently in the Totalplay Cup bubble.
Totalplay Cup Standings Bubble Watch
|Points List Pos.||Player||Jalisco Open GDL Pos.||Projected Totalplay Cup Rank|
|56||Danny Ochoa (U.S.)||T74||59|
|57||Peyton Wilhoit (U.S.)||T24||53|
|58||Brendon Doyle (U.S.)||T57||60|
|59||Samuel Anderson (U.S.)||T88||61|
|60||Thomas Lilly (U.S.)||T57||62|
|61||Santiago Bauni (Argentina)||T100||63|
|62||Joel Thelen (U.S.)*||--||--|
|63||Skyler Finnell (U.S.)||T74||67|
|64||Alex Scott (U.S.)||T38||65|
|65||Matías Simaski (Argentina)||T38||66|
* Korn Ferry Tour player (not competing this week)
As one of the leaders, at 6-under 65, Rodolfo Cazaubón, of Tampico, is the leading Mexican through the opening round. A total of 39 Mexican players started the tournament and the following are the ones who shot under par Thursday:
|T1||Rodolfo Cazaubón||65 (-6)|
|T5||José de Jesús Rodríguez||66 (-5)|
|T11||Isidro Benítez||67 (-4)|
|T24||Diego Córdova||68 (-3)|
|T24||a-Isaac Rodea||68 (-3)|
|T24||a-Marcelo Mexsen Murra||68 (-3)|
|T38||Eduardo Cabrera||69 (-2)|
|T38||Emiliano López Ochoa||69 (-2)|
|T38||Luis Gerardo Garza||69 (-2)|
|T38||Alejandro Madariaga||69 (-2)|
|T57||Raúl Pereda||70 (-1)|
|T57||Aaron Terrazas||70 (-1)|
|T57||Álvaro Ortiz||70 (-1)|
First-Round Weather: Partly cloudy. High of 101. Wind W at 15-24, with gusts to 36 mph.