The one time Rory McIlroy could have been slightly annoyed was the very reason the AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am was so enjoyable.
McIlroy was just starting to take his driver back on the par-5 seventh at Spyglass Hill when he saw the shadow of his father move. With so much sunshine Thursday across the Monterey Peninsula, that was inevitable.
‘‘So I backed off it. I said, ‘Fine, stand still.’ Blocked it way right and hit my second in the water,’’ McIlroy said. ‘‘Hard to say anything. Chipped in for birdie, so I was like, ‘You’re forgiven.’ ’’
There wasn’t much not to like on a day like this, especially for Kevin Streelman and Beau Hossler.
Streelman doesn’t even play the most golf on his pro-am team — his partner is Arizona Cardinals receiver Larry Fitzgerald, a golf fanatic and regular at Whisper Rock — but he managed to put together another strong round at Spyglass and keep bogeys off his card for a 7-under-par 65.
He shared the lead to par with Hossler, who added another strong memory from northern California. Hossler, who challenged for the lead as a 17-year-old on the weekend of the 2012 US Open at Olympic Club, was bogey-free at Pebble Beach.
Hossler birdied the 16th and 17th and had a chance to take the lead on the par-5 18th until enough wind came up to make it a challenge. He sent his tee shot to the right, his second into a fairway bunker, didn’t quite reach the green and had to make an 8-foot putt to save par.
‘‘Just a lot going on there, so I was glad to get out of there with a 5,’’ Hossler said.
Aaron Wise also had a 65. He was on the Shore Course at Monterey Peninsula, which plays to a par 71. Also at 6 under were Matt Kuchar and Julian Suri, who were at Spyglass. Suri grew up in Jacksonville, Fla., and has moved up to No. 66 in the world based on his play on the European Tour. Pebble Beach is his third straight sponsor’s exemption on the PGA Tour.
McIlroy, meanwhile, used that unlikely birdie on No. 7 to begin his move that eventually reached 4 under until a scrappy finish for a 68, leaving him three shots behind in his debut in the AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am.
‘‘A couple of messy holes coming in,’’ he said. ‘‘Made a good bogey on 16. Made a great par on 17. It was nice to finish with a birdie at the last. So all in all pretty pleased.’’
Scoring conditions were so good — everything was good this day — that 97 out of the 156 players broke par.
Defending champion Jordan Spieth was not among them. He missed a birdie chance from 3 feet on the par-5 13th hole, which was annoying because he didn’t have many looks like that. Spieth made one birdie, one bogey and 16 pars.
He was at 72 and, after grabbing lunch, was headed out to the practice green for some work.
Dustin Johnson, a two-time Pebble winner and the No. 1 player in the world, had very little stress after he got up-and-down from the collar of the green at the par-3 fifth hole for bogey at Spyglass for a 67. He played with hockey great Wayne Gretzky, who had two birdies.
Among those at 5 under was Keith Mitchell, a PGA Tour rookie who had never been to the Monterey Peninsula until he came up last week to play with retired race car driver Danny Sullivan.
European, Asian and Australia —
Rumford led the tournament from start to finish last year, dominating the opening three rounds of stroke play before winning the final-round match-play format at Lake Karrinyup Country Club.
Westwood, tied for second place after the first round with James Nitties of Australia, missed the cut in his first two tournaments of the year before finishing tied for 11th in Malaysia last week.
‘‘I don’t think this is a tournament where you want to be playing catch-up,’’ Westwood said after his 66. ‘‘You want to get yourself in the mix and try and cruise through the second and third days and get into that top 24.’’
Nine golfers were tied for fourth, three strokes behind Rumford.
Andrew (Beef) Johnston shot 73. He was a late replacement for fellow Englishman Tyrrell Hatton, who was the highest-ranked player in the field at No. 15 before withdrawing with a wrist injury. Danny Willett, the 2016 Masters champion, shot 76, and he and Johnston were in danger of missing the cut.
The top 24 after three rounds play a series of six-hole shootouts in the event co-sanctioned by three tours: European, Asian and PGA of Australia.