SAVANNAH, Ga. – Max McGreevy’s first and only Korn Ferry Tour win came after grabbing a share of the 18-hole lead last July. By the end of Thursday’s opening round at the Club Car Championship at The Landings Club, McGreevy once again found himself atop the leaderboard and in the hunt for a title.
McGreevy, a native of Edmond, Oklahoma, carded a 7-under 65 Thursday, the same first-round score he posted at this event last October, when he finished T15. From the big Georgia pines lining fairways, to the sight lines off the tee, The Landings Club’s Deer Creek Course suits McGreevy’s game. The University of Oklahoma alum is also riding a wave of confidence from his final-round 8-under 63 – tied for the lowest score of his career – and T12 finish at last week’s Chitimacha Louisiana Open presented by MISTRAS.
“I was super excited to get back over here,” McGreevy said. “I really like this golf course. I think it suits my game really well. You’ve got to hit a lot of fairways. It looks very comfortable to me out here. There’s not a tee shot I don’t like. I had some good momentum coming off Louisiana last week, too, some great Saturday and Sunday rounds.”
After a bogey at the par-3 second, the toughest hole on the course Thursday, McGreevy bounced back with birdies at the third, fifth, and seventh. He nearly made three in a row, but three-putted after reaching the par-5 sixth in two.
Once McGreevy made the turn, his putter caught fire. His 11-putt back nine was highlighted by one-putt par saves at 10 and 12, routine birdies at 13, 16, and 18, and a 20-foot make from the fringe for eagle at the par-5 14th. All told, McGreevy played his final six holes at 5-under par.
McGreevy, who won PGA TOUR China’s Order of Merit in 2019 to earn fully exempt status for the start of the 2020-21 Korn Ferry Tour season, hit 13 of 14 fairways, and 15 of 18 greens in regulation.
“I didn’t get off to the best start. I bogeyed No. 2, was 1-over through two and was just trying to get some chances,” McGreevy said. “The eagle I made on 14 was a plus for sure. I kind of mishit my shot. I was just trying to hit it over the green. Luckily, it just barely covered the bunker and rolled out to about 20 feet on the fringe, and I was able to roll it in. I was solid all day long. Made a couple good par saves to keep the round going and finished strong there at the end.
“At the end of the round, the cup looked like a bucket. I feel really comfortable out here on these greens, and I’m excited for the next three rounds.”
Sitting 19th in the Korn Ferry Tour points standings, McGreevy is contending for his first PGA TOUR card largely because of his victory at last July’s Price Cutter Charity Championship presented by Dr Pepper, the only other tournament in his Tour career he led after 18 holes. McGreevy shot an 8-under 64 and shared the 18-hole lead, slipped to T9 after the third round, then closed with another 64 and won the title.
McGreevy holds a one-stroke lead over Stuart Macdonald and Curtis Thompson, one of his playing partners Thursday.
“Max played great,” Thompson said. “You always want to beat the guys in your group, but he put up a really hard fight on that back nine. Thirty-one is tough, especially in this wind. It’s always great to feed off somebody like that. I had putts on 16 and 17 from eight to 12 feet that I missed. He and I were on fire that back nine. It was just like we were feeding off each other.”
Second-round tee times will run from 7:20 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. Friday off the first and 10th tees.