Nelly Korda makes disastrous 10 (!) on a par 3 early in her opening round of the U.S. Women’s Open

There’s no such thing as a lock, but Nelly Korda has felt like a lock to win every tournament she’s teed it up in this season on the LPGA Tour. It felt the same this week in the leadup to the 2024 U.S. Women’s Open at Lancaster (Pa.) Country Club, where Korda was a 3-1 favorite, the next closest competitor being Rose Zhang at 16-1.

Just three holes into her first round, Korda now seems like a lock to miss the cut. Yes, really.

Following a bogey on her first hole, the par-4 10th, the World No. 1 made par at No. 11 and then got stuck waiting on the 12th tee for well over 20 minutes. The treacherous par 3 is already wreaking havoc on the field, and it’s causing a massive backup as players attempt to navigate it in windy conditions. Colombia’s Mariajo Uribe made a 9 on the hole, which was somehow outdone by none other than Korda, who flew the green into the back bunker and then hit her second over the green into the creek that runs in front of putting surface.

Korda’s troubles were only getting started. After taking her drop on the other side of the creek, Korda chunked her fourth shot back into the water and had to take another drop, a scene reminiscent of Jordan Spieth’s debacle at the 12th hole on Sunday of the 2016 Masters. Korda then her hit sixth into the water again, turning a mini-disaster into an outright catastrophe on just her third hole of the day/championship.

After yet another drop, Korda put her eighth shot of the hole to 11 feet, missing the putt for a 9 and tapping in for the worst score in golf—a double-digit score of 10. Here’s the full breakdown from our graphic gurus here at Golf Digest (WARNING: NSFW):

With the 10, Korda dropped to eight over par, which is two clear of Uribe, who is in last at 10 over through 10 holes among those who have teed off. It’s far too early to know what the cut line will be, but whatever it is Korda will need a ton of birdies to start working toward it. Not exactly what she or any of us had in mind coming into the week, but golf remains the most humbling game there is.

The good news, if there is any, is that there are currently only four players under par out of the 78 that have teed off. Lancaster appears to be playing extremely tough and should only get tougher in the afternoon. If Korda can just get a few shots back, her score might end up not looking nearly as bad as it seems at the moment.

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