Date: February 14, 2014
Author: Dejan Kalinic, Omnisport

Johnson sets pace in California, Jones a shot back

Dustin Johnson carded a five-under 66 to take a one-shot lead after the opening round of the Northern Trust Open was suspended, while Australian Matt Jones is a shot back.

Darkness led to an early end to play on Thursday, with 15 players yet to complete their rounds at the Riviera Country Club in California. Not before Johnson, who has been in decent form, had holed six birdies and a bogey to top a congested leaderboard. A group of 11 players are a shot back, including the red-hot Jimmy Walker and JB Holmes, who is through 16 and the best placed of those yet to finish. Johnson has two top-10 finishes on the PGA Tour this season, including a tied for second behind Walker at the AT&T Pebble Beach National Pro-Am on Sunday. He carried his momentum into the opening round, holing four birdies on his first nine holes after starting on the 10th. Another followed at the first, with a bogey at the par-three fourth the only blemish before he birdied the eighth. "Coming off a good week last week, I'm definitely feeling good coming in this week and then obviously getting off to a great start today," Johnson said. "Any score under par out here is a pretty solid round. It's a tough course, but it's right in front of you, so it's just a golf course that I really like." Walker birdied his final three holes to complete a four-under 67 after back-to-back bogeys at 12 and 13 had left him a fair way back. Holmes has two holes to play and could easily join Johnson in the lead if he finishes his opening round well. Americans Robert Garrigus, Scott Stallings, Charley Hoffman, Brian Harman, Blake Adams and Charlie Beljan are also tied for second. Italy's Francesco Molinari, Australian Matt Jones and South Korean Sang-Moon Bae are alongside them. Defending champion John Merrick of the United States opened with a one-over 72 and is tied for 85th.