Saturday's golf: Rahm-Palmer, Stallings-Mullinax share Zurich Classic lead
Avondale, La. — Jon Rahm and Ryan Palmer shared the lead with Scott Stallings and Trey Mullinax as the Zurich Classic finally got back on schedule.
Rahm and Palmer played 30 holes Saturday in the event delayed by rain for more than seven hours Thursday, finishing off a 7-under 65 in the alternate-shot second round and shooting 64 in best-ball play in the third.
“It’s been 4:30 four nights in a row,” Palmer said. “Dinners at 9 and back up at 4:30. Took its toll on me. Just feeding me sugar and food trying to keep my energy up. Tomorrow we’ll be on a lot of rest. If we’re on tomorrow in alternate shot, we’re going to be hard to beat.”
Rahm carried the team in the third round, with the Spaniard making eight birdies.
“He’s just fun to be around,” Palmer said. “He’s actually a great guy. I’ve enjoyed every second with him. When you’re up close and personal and watching it and see the shots he can hit around the green, you know, his short game is phenomenal. You can learn something from that, too, so I learned a lot. Honor to be a part of it.”
Palmer saved bogey with an 8-footer on the par-3 17th after both players hit into the water, and Rahm made a 15-foot birdie putt on the par-5 18th to match Stallings and Mullinax at 23-under 193.
“That putt Ryan made was probably the most important shot we made so far in the tournament,” Rahm said. “Felt like a birdie, and then to keep tied for the lead, very important.”
Stallings and Mullinax played 27 holes, shooting 70-62.
“We play a lot of practice rounds together,” Stallings said. “We’ve known each other for a few years. Just kind of we played so much together it just kind of made sense. We know each other’s games pretty well.”
Mullinax looked ahead to the final round.
“I really enjoy alternate shot,” Mullinax said. “Scott hits the ball great. Hitting it nice. We’re both putting well. I don’t feel like there is much pressure on us. Just go out and do our thing.”
Brandan Grace and Justin Harding were a stroke back. The South Africans played 32 holes, shooting 68-61.
“I think we played 50 odd holes,” Harding joked. “We certainly moved up the board. It’s just a matter of continuing the momentum throughout the rounds.”
Peter Malnati and Billy Hurley III were 20 under. They shot 66 after finishing the second round Friday.
Sergio Garcia and Tommy Fleetwood were another stroke back with the teams of Joel Dahmen-Brandon Harkins, Austin Cook-Andrew Landry, Hank Lebioda-Curtis Luck, Russell Henley-Ryan Blaum and Russell Knox-Brian Stuard (Jackson). Brothers Brooks and Chase Koepka topped the group at 18 under along with Henrik Stenson and Graeme McDowell.
Minjee Lee overcame a triple bogey at Los Angeles to take the lead into the final round of the Hugel-Air Premia LA Open.
Lee shot a 4-under 67 to reach 11-under 202 at Wilshire Country Club. The 22-year-old Australian birdied the first two holes before dropping the three strokes on the par-4 third. She rallied with birdies on Nos. 5, 6, 10, 14 and 17 – all par 4s – for a one-stroke lead over Denmark’s Nanna Koerstz Madsen.
Ranked fourth in the world, Lee won the last of her four LPGA Tour titles in May in Michigan in the LPGA Volvik Championship. She tied for third last week in Hawaii for her third top-three finish of the season.
The 24-year-old Koerstz Madsen also shot 67. She’s trying to become the first LPGA Tour winner from Denmark
Inbee Park was 7 under after a 68. The South Korean star has 19 LPGA Tour victories – seven in majors – but is winless in more than year.
Top-ranked Jin Young Ko and Morgan Pressel were 6 under. Ko had a 67. She’s the only player with multiple victories this year, taking the Founders Cup in Phoenix and the major ANA Inspiration in Rancho Mirage. Pressel shot 70.
South African golfer Erik Van Rooyen posted a 5-under 68 to take a one-shot lead from Jorge Campillo after the third round of the Trophee Hassan II at Rabat, Morocco.
Van Rooyen had two bogeys but made seven birdies to lead at 8 under overall, while Campillo had five birdies and a bogey in his 69.
Americans David Lipsky and Sean Crocker shared a one-shot overnight lead after the second round, but fell back.
Crocker was in third place, two shots behind the leader, after a 1-under 72 in which his five birdies were undone by two bogeys and a double bogey on the 16th hole.
Four players were three shots behind Van Rooyen heading into Sunday’s fourth and final round on the Royal Golf Dar Es Salam course. Tied for fourth place were American Julian Suri, Australian Wade Ormsby, Englishman Lee Slattery and Scotsman Grant Forrest.
Lipsky opened with four straight bogeys but recovered well to limit the damage with a 1-over 74.
He sits four shots off the lead along with first-round leader Jordan Smith of England, who hit an eagle on the 17th on his way to a par 73.
Tom Pernice Jr. and Scott Hoch stretched their lead to three strokes at Riverdale, Missouri, in the PGA Tour Champions’ Bass Pro Shops Legends of Golf, shooting a 6-under 48 on the Top of the Rock par-3 course at Big Cedar Lodge.
After opening with a 9-under 62 on Friday in best-ball play at Ozarks National to take a one-stroke lead, Pernice and Hoch had seven birdies and a bogey on two trips around the par-3 layout, playing modified alternate shot in one nine and best ball in the other.
Jesper Parnevik-Jeff Maggert and Paul Goydos-Kevin Sutherland were tied for second after their rounds at Ozarks National. Parnevik- Maggert shot 62, and Goydos-Sutherland had a 66.
Roger Chapman and David Frost were 11 under after a 51 on the par-3 course, the site of the final round Sunday.