His score at 13 was first posted as an eight, then a nine and finally a 10 that left him 10-over for his round and 16-over for the tournament. "Today is just a good day, and I've got three tough days left". "But I'm playing well enough to shoot that number, given the conditions, and I just have to putt a little better".
A three-putt at the vicious par-three second will have badly hurt given he found the dancefloor with his tee shot.
But former world No.1 Day wasn't the only casualty on a disastrous first round for many of golf's big names, with play expected to worsen as the afternoon groups face even stronger winds.
Johnson shared the lead with three others after shooting a 1-under 69 in the first round. "I'm not saying it's going to, but it could". This is the only major he has never won, and Mickelson has had two good chances at Shinnecock.
Along the way, he even managed to impress a 14-time major champion.
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Taking advantage of soft, morning conditions brought on by rain, Johnson, who teed off Shinnecock's 10th hole, picked up birdies at the par-three 11th and par-five 16th. A round that began with fans singing "Happy Birthday" to Mickelson as he walked down the first fairway went off the rails in a very unusual way.
Mickelson was given a 10 for the par-4 hole.
On Thursday he hit the fairway on his first shot, went down a hill after flying the green on his second and watched his third shot hit the top of the hill before rolling back to him. He's putted brilliantly and, critically, avoided the constant disasters lurking at Shinnecock Hills that have hurt most of his rivals.
"I got the job done, so now it's time to chill and have fun", said Hill, who is WNMU's all-time scoring leader and an ex-assistant coach.
He racked up four bogeys and a double-bogey in the second round at the notoriously hard Shinnecock Hills, while his scorecard from day one had two double-bogeys and a triple-bogey on it. They were at 141, along with Henrik Stenson and Justin Rose, each with a 70, and Poulter.
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Yet Woods carded the worst score of the entire field on No. 1 Thursday, a ghastly triple bogey that was triggered by an errant approach that rolled off the back of the green.
Woods said he would take the week off before playing the National and then heading to Carnoustie, Scotland, for the British Open. Equally though, just one costly mistake from Dustin Johnson could set up a mouthwatering finale to this championship.
That swing, on his last hole of this tournament, resulted in a drive to the right center of the fairway, leading to that walk alongside Johnson.
And that was just the first hole.
Phil Mickelson won't have any trouble remembering Saturday is his birthday.
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