Cameron Young, Eric Cole and Davis Thompson turned in rounds of 6-under 66 to set the pace before play was suspended at the RSM Classic on Thursday in St. Simons Island, Ga.
The finale of the FedEx Cup Fall series suffered from an inclement weather delay of more than 2 1/2 hours Thursday afternoon. Play resumed at 4:18 p.m. local time before darkness fell an hour later.
Ninety players in the 155-man field will need to complete their rounds when play resumes Friday morning.
Thursday’s and Friday’s rounds are split between Sea Island Golf Club’s Seaside and Plantation courses. Young, Cole and Thompson all shot 66 at the Plantation course, with Young and Thompson going bogey-free.
Matt Kuchar shot a 5-under 65 on the Seaside course, and Ricky Barnes and Swedish rising star Ludvig Aberg had 5-under 67s at the Plantation course. Ben Carr, Peter Kuest and Nicholas Lindheim were also tied at 5 under with some golf left to play.
Young started on the back nine and made four birdies from Nos. 14-18. He stayed in neutral until closing with consecutive birdies at the par-5 eighth and par-4 ninth holes.
“The one on 9 to finish the day was nice,” Young said. “It was getting pretty dark and kind of it’s just a very flat light, it’s hard to read the greens, so to make a nice like 7- or 8-footer there was nice.”
Young, ranked No. 18 in the Official World Gold Ranking, is still hunting for his first career PGA Tour win.
Cole, meanwhile, knows something about winning. Though he’s yet to capture his first title on the PGA Tour, he was a prolific winner on the mini-tours. The son of former pro golfers Bobby Cole and Laura Baugh, the 35-year-old is a candidate for PGA Tour Rookie of the Year.
“Any tournament I come to I try and be prepared and play as well as I can,” Cole said after leading the field with eight birdies to offset two bogeys. “You know, I got my fiancee and her parents here and my mom here, so just trying to have a good week and we’ll see where the weekend goes.”
Davis Thompson entered the week No. 76 in the FedEx Cup Fall points standings and could leap into the 50s with a strong finish. Landing in the Nos. 51-60 range after the RSM Classic earns players bids into two signature events this winter, the AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am and the Genesis Invitational.
Thompson, who finished his round with three straight birdies, makes his home in St. Simons Island and is plenty familiar with the courses.
“We don’t really play it in this condition out there throughout the year,” Thompson said. “Usually when we play, the weather’s great and just go out and make a lot of birdies. You know, the greens are faster, the fairways are cut tighter, so it’s definitely more of a challenge than when we just come out and play.”
Aberg eagled the eighth hole to polish off his bogey-free 67. He continues to make a name for himself after playing well for the victorious Team Europe at the Ryder Cup.
Players are vying to finish in the top 125 in the FedEx Cup Fall standings to secure their tour cards for 2024. Finishing Nos. 126-150 will earn players conditional PGA Tour status and full-time Korn Ferry Tour status next year.