LEMONT, Ill. — Matt Kuchar was feeling terrible and playing even worse. He managed to hold himself together long enough Friday to salvage 1-over 72 and share the lead with Charlie Wi in the BMW Championship.
Tiger Woods, the defending champion and a five-time winner at Cog Hill, was resigned to the fact that the greens were not pure. He didn't make many putts and shot 72, leaving him in a tie for 40th, nine shots out.
The only score that matters — along with the number on his card — is his rank in the FedEx Cup standings. Woods is No. 51 and needs to finish around fifth at Cog Hill week to make the Tour Championship in two weeks.
"I was as weak as I could be," Kuchar said. "I tried for the four or five seconds over the ball to flip the switch on and really give it what I had and go back to walking around without a whole lot of energy."
"For me to play well, I knew that I had to stay in the present and just play one hole at a time," he said. "Actually, I wrote that down on my pin sheet every day so I look at it if I were to get ahead of myself."
The greens are inconsistent because of summer heat and recent rain. But it's not just the greens. Phil Mickelson (71 —143) has done little to hide his disdain of the Rees Jones course makeover and at one point suggested, "I'm not good enough to play this course."
Pressel and Juli Inkster played alongside 17-year-old Daniel Watkins from The First Tee program. A dozen players from the youth development organization are joining the pros during the first two rounds in a best-ball competition that is taking place alongside the LPGA Tour tournament.
"We had a lot of fun out there," said Pressel, of Boca Raton. "It didn't really come out until the last hole when he admitted to me that he was very nervous about the spectators and didn't want to kill anybody. I told him that Tiger (Woods) hits it all over the place, too, and has a lot more spectators than we do, so not to worry about it."
Pressel shot 5-under 66 to take a one-stroke over Yani Tseng, Gloria Park and Na Yeon Choi. Michelle Wie, coming off a victory in the Canadian Women's Open, was another stroke back along with five others.