POTOMAC, Md. — EDITOR'S NOTE: WUSA9 is the media sponsor of the 2022 Wells Fargo Championship, hosted at TPC Potomac at Avenel Farms.
Born in Takoma Park, and raised in Burtonsville and Rockville, pro golfer Denny McCarthy topped the leaderboard for most of the day at the first round of the Wells Fargo Championship at TPC Potomac at Avenel Farm.
The hometown hero loves playing the course less than nine miles from Georgetown Prep, where he played in high school.
And local fans are loving the chance two watch him.
"Woohoo. Pulling for him," said retiree Don Crichton of Kensington, who was watching his first pro tournament with his buddy, Jerry Bush of Damascus.
"We came out to watch Rory McIlroy. But the local boy, McCarthy, we're hanging with him," said Crichton. "I hope he can hang on, and we'll be rooting for him," said Bush, whooping with joy.
McCarthy finished five-under-par. But it's a long game and a long tournament, and by the end of the day, Jason Day had pulled ahead with a seven-under.
Arguably the tour's best putter, McCarthy lives in Florida now. He played TPC Potomac growing up.
Would he like to make his hometown a regular stop on the tour? "Yeah, I wouldn't be opposed to that. I would love to come here every year," McCarthy told WUSA9.
That idea is getting a qualified endorsement from Rory McIlroy, Wells Fargo's defending champion. "I think it's a very good course," McIlroy said.
McCarthy, 29, has been staying at his parent's house in Rockville. Maybe it's the home cooking that has him in a great position for the second round on Friday.
"Last night we had crab cakes. Because when he's in Maryland. That's what he wants," said his mom, Elena McCarthy.
"Definitely feel right at home... It's an exciting week," Denny McCarthy said.
The pros last played in the area in 2018. And they're not due back until 2031.
McIlroy said he'd like to make this area a regular stop too. But he says it's really up to the sponsors. He also says they're still looking for one to sponsor a tournament around here.