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Another first-time major winner likely

Patrick Reed looks over the 18th green during

Patrick Reed looks over the 18th green during the third round of the U.S. Open golf tournament Saturday, June 17, 2017, at Erin Hills in Erin, Wis. Credit: AP / David J. Phillip

ERIN, Wisconsin — This U.S. Open is almost certain to produce another first, no matter who wins.

The past six major championships have been won by first-time major winners, a streak that is very likely to continue. Sergio Garcia, the current Masters champion, is the closest to the top among those with major titles and he is tied for 17th at 4 under par, eight strokes back. It would take quite a charge along with a multiple-player collapse for him or Zach Johnson or Jim Furyk (each 3 under) to win.

Reed in red, white and blue

Patrick Reed drew intense support from fans chanting “U-S-A!” and calling him “Captain America” as he wore a red, white and blue outfit — including the pants he wore for the U.S. Ryder Cup team. It didn’t hurt him as he shot 7-under 65 and moved into contention at 8 under.

He said it was the first time he has worn them in competition since the victory over Europe last fall. “I’ve worn them a lot around the house and stuff like that, and in practice,” he said. Reed added that his wife, mother-in-law and sister-in-law chose the color scheme. “I was all for it,” he said, pointing out that it did bring back some Ryder Cup mojo.

Reed has been a dynamo in Ryder Cup play but never has won a major. He admitted he has put too much pressure on himself in the latter category of events. The emotions in each type of competition are not all that transferable. “You’re talking polar opposites. You’re talking one-on-one competition and one-against-155,” he said. “You can go out and play some great golf, but you have a bunch of guys out there who can play some great golf, as well. I think the biggest thing is not getting ahead of yourself.”


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