KIAWAH ISLAND, S.C. - After exiting the scoring trailer, Jeff Coston was wiping his face with a towel and bemoaning a decent round that could have been a very good round.
Coston, a teaching professional at Semiahmoo Golf Resort in Blaine, shot a 2-over 74 on the Ocean Course in the first round of the PGA Championship on Thursday, Aug. 9. Coston was 1-under through 11 holes, but closed with a bogey on his 15th and a double-bogey on his 18th.
"I'm happy to be here," said Coston, 56, who is making his fourth appearance in the PGA Championship. "I'm like Benjamin Button, I'm getting better with age."
That's quite a task at Kiawah Island, which has been lengthened and toughened since it hosted the Senior PGA Championship in 2007. Coston tied for 19th that year and finished as the low club professional, but he's noticed quite a difference in the course setup.
"I should have been allowed to move up a couple of sets of tees," Coston joked. "They've lengthened it quite a bit and the greens are different. I hit a 5-wood into 17 today; in '07 I hit a 5-iron. I hit a 5-wood into 18 today; in '07 I hit a 5-iron. I need to do another round of push-ups. I did a thousand this morning, maybe I need to do 500 more."
Coston had the lowest score in his Thursday pairing. Robert Rock, a winner on the European Tour, shot a 76 and rookie sensation Bud Cauley had an 80.
This is Coston's fourth trip to the PGA Championship. He made the cut on the number in 2004 at Whistling Straits, but missed the cut in 2005 and 2011.
"I'm not jumpy about this course," he said. "I'm thankful to be able to play. I would just like to have put up a better number."
Coston has enjoyed his week so far. He's staying on the island with some people he knows. And his caddie is Zack Shriver, who has been one of Coston's students for nine years. Coston played practice rounds with Zach Johnson, Jonathan Byrd, Aaron Baddeley and Hunter Mahan, whom he knew, and on Wednesday played nine holes with Marcel Siem of Germany, who he did not know.
"It's nice to create new relationships and it was good to get to know Aaron a little better," Coston said.
Coston will tee off for the second round on Friday at 11:20 a.m. on the first tee. He began the first round on the 10th tee.