2022 Shriners Children’s Open leaderboard, scores: Tom Hogg leads as Presidents Cup players star in Las Vegas

The Shriners Children’s Open first round leaderboard is exciting. Tom Hoge leads after the round was suspended due to darkness on Thursday with a stunning 8-under 63, but a number of players who bring interesting stories to the table are right behind him.

While some of the biggest names in the field — Patrick Cantlay, Rickie Fowler and Max Homa — didn’t make it to the top of the table, they’re all still very much in the mix after strong starts at TPC Summerlin. All will be after Hoge, however, over the final three days as he tries to add to his 2022 win collection after taking the AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am earlier this year.

Let’s take a look at his round as well as who else is in the hunt this week.

The leader

T1. Tom Hodge (-8)

Hoge was a threat in Round 1, though he said it was “a little unexpected” because he’s taken some time away from golf in recent weeks. He finished third in approach shots and third from the tee to the green, meaning he didn’t have to putt all that well to shoot the only 63 on the field Thursday. But this is nothing new. As of Jan. 1, Hoge is a top-30 iron player in the world, and even higher than that if you look at just PGA Tour players. He’s unlikely to fade even if he doesn’t win, which would be his second career Tour win after his first in February at Pebble Beach.

The stakes are high for someone like Hoge this week, especially considering only the top 70 in the FedEx Cup rankings will make the FedEx Cup Playoffs this year. He is coming off a career year in which he cleared $4 million and finished in the top 50 of the FedEx Cup standings for the first time in his career (he finished 10th). Improving on this would be incredible.

“Yeah, I felt like last fall I got off to a good start,” Hoge said. “I’ve played well in the fall in the past. I feel like there are a lot of good golf courses that are good for me in the fall. That’s one of the reasons I’m playing a lot this year. I feel like I could get off to a good start in the FedEx Cup. I felt that i had it last year and continued it on the west coast just trying to do more of the same.

“I didn’t play as well as I would have liked last summer, but you start this nice and you can relax even when you don’t play well. Just trying to play as well as I can here in the fall and make this start.”

Other contenders

T2. Si Woo Kim, Maverick McNealy (-7)
T4. Keith Mitchell, Thomas Detry, Will Gordon, Tom Kim, Sam Ryder, Sungjae Im (-6)

There are so many different directions we could go here, but let’s not forget how well the Presidents Cup International team performed in Round 1. It has three players in the top 11, including last year’s winner in this event, Sungjae Im. I took one of the featured groups this week and it picked up where it left off not only last year but also a few weeks ago when it starred at Quail Hollow.

Si Woo Kim also reflects on the Presidents Cup final, where he took down Justin Thomas, stepping into one of Hoge. Is it a coincidence that these guys are carrying so much at this week’s Shriner’s event? Maybe, but maybe not considering the experience they all had.

“I wasn’t very confident before the Presidents Cup because I didn’t finish as well as I did at the end,” Kim said. “I think I’ve had a lot of confidence since the Presidents Cup and after, like everything feels comfortable and so much tension and so much pressure in the week of the Presidents Cup. So now I like a lot of calmness and no pressure in it. So I try to stay more focused and you like positive”.

Tom Kim forever

Tom Kim, Si Woo Kim’s partner for a stretch of the week at Quail Hollow, is also off to a strong start in Vegas after an incredible bid earlier in the week on Tiger Woods’ career PGA Tour record of 82 wins.

“I’m always myself,” Tom Kim said. “It hasn’t changed a bit with who I am. No, I don’t think it’s really changed for me. I think it’s going to be the same. Tiger has 82 wins on the PGA Tour. By the time I get to 83, it’s going to be hard for me to I think a little differently.”

Tom Kim forever.

2022 Shriners Children’s Open updated odds and picks

  • Sungjae Im: 7-1
  • Patrick Cantlay: 2/15
  • Tom Hoge: 2/15
  • Tom Kim: 10-1
  • Si Woo Kim: 10-1
  • Maverick McNeely: 14-1

I want to believe that Tom Kim will win this golf tournament, of course, but I’m not sure that 10-1 is a great number for him at this juncture. Instead, I’d like to draw your attention to Keith Mitchell, who is just outside the shorter players at 18-1. He finished fourth from the tee to the green and fourth in approach shots Thursday and will be tough if he continues that kind of iron play. It’s the sharp choice here even among the bigger names. Homa (back four) at 25-1 is also worth a look.

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