HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - There were roughly 140-golfers who teed off at Waialae Country Club for round 1 of the Sony Open, but only two of them had the state of Hawaii behind them.
With big names like Zach Johnson, Y.E. Yang and K.J. Choi on the course, arguably some of the larger galleries of the day followed 23-year old Mililani native Jared Sawada, an amateur, and Kirk Nelson, a professional based out of Kihei, Maui.
Sawada (who will turn pro on the Japan tour later this year) was admittedly nervous and it showed on the first three holes. Sawada's drives off the first and third tee both landed out of bounds wide right of the fairway. And while he was able to save par on the first hole, he'd follow up a bogey on the second hole, with a double bogey on three, taking him to three over par through three holes.
"I told myself before this tournament that I would take my time. I feel like on most shots I was just rushing to hit the ball," said Sawada. "So I think tomorrow, i'll take my time and make sure that I got the yardage, the right club and make sure I know which way the wind is blowing. Because that screwed me on a couple holes, I totally didn't even think about the wind."
Sawada finished the day at 8-over par, carding a 78.
Meanwhile, the 54-year old Nelson began his day on the 10th hole. He carded back-to-back bogeys on 12 and 13 but settled down for the most part the rest of the way.
Nelson carded a 4-over par, 74, and is tied for 115th place heading into round two, Friday.