Breaking down Round 3 of Rocket Mortgage Classic: Ryan Armour's undoing on No. 17

Matt Charboneau
The Detroit News

Detroit — Breaking down Saturday’s third round of the Rocket Mortgage Classic at Detroit Golf Club:

Hole of the day

NO. 17, 577 YARDS, PAR 5

The hole played as the easiest for the third consecutive round with an average score of 4.457 on Saturday, but it was a big number that proved anything can happen. While leader Matthew Wolff made a relatively easy birdie, as did Bryson DeChambeau, who’s tied for second place, it didn’t go quite as well for Ryan Armour. The PGA Tour veteran looking for his second career victory led for most of the afternoon but lost control at the 17th. Not a long hitter, it took Armour four shots to reach the green but it was the three putts that were the real dagger, leaving Armour three shots back at the time. He rebounded by carding a birdie at No. 18 to remain in contention and will play in the final group with Wolff.

Ryan Armour hits to the 14th green.

Shot of the day

Things weren’t exactly going well Saturday for second-round leader Chris Kirk. He wasn’t blowing up, but he wasn’t rolling in birdies, either. And at this event, that means you’re getting left in the dust. That’s where Kirk found himself on No. 15, a par 3 playing 164 yards. His tee shot ended up in a greenside bunker with little room for error on his next swing, with the pin tucked on the right side. A par seemed like a long shot based on the pin placement, but Kirk responded by splashing his second shot out of the sand, onto the green and then a short roll into the hole for a birdie. Kirk enters Sunday’s final round five back of leader Matthew Wolff.


Quote of the day

“First of all, that’s disgusting. But more power to him for taking down 75 hot dogs. No. I actually … it takes me a while to eat food. … There’s no chance I’d win that contest.” — Bryson DeChambeau, who famously eats nearly 3,500 calories a day, after being told the winning number of hot dogs eaten by Joey Chestnut to win Nathan’s Famous Hot Dog Eating Contest on Saturday.

Stat of the day

21 — With a win, leader Matthew Wolff would become the youngest two-time PGA Tour winner since Tiger Woods. At 21 years, 2 months and 21 days, Wolff is nearly a year older than Woods was when he captured his second victory at the age of 20 years, 9 months and 20 days.

Stat of the day II

7 — Consecutive top-10 finishes that Bryson DeChambeau is shooting for this week. Before the Rocket Mortgage Classic, DeChambeau had finished in the top 10 six straight times — tie for fifth at The Genesis Invitational, second at the WGC Mexico Championship, fourth at the Arnold Palmer Invitational, tied for third at the Charles Schwab Challenge, tied for eighth at the RBC Heritage and tied for sixth at last week’s Travelers Championship.

Stat of the day III

25 — Birdies (24) and eagles (one) by Matthew Wolff through 54 holes, the most by any player at this point in any tournament this season.

Local watch

Brian Stuard (Jackson/Oakland): Entering the third round just three shots off the lead, Stuard shot a 2-over 73 on Saturday. After shooting 1 under on the front nine, Stuard opened the back with a double-bogey on No. 10 (the same hole he eagles to start his tournament Thursday), and after a birdie at No. 17, he bogeyed No. 18 to close the round.

Area 313 watch

Players have piled up $325,000 in donations from Rocket Mortgage through the first three rounds as 11 eagles have been made on No. 14 along with 54 birdies on the 16th. The big prize is still out there, however, and four players still have a shot if they can manage to ace the 15th hole during Sunday’s final round. That would give them the 3-1-3 and a $313,000 charity donation to Changing the Course from Rocket Mortgage. Jonathan Byrd, Bryson DeChambeau, Brendon Todd and leader Matthew Wolff have carded a 3 (eagle) on No. 14 and a 3 (birdie) on 16 in through the first three rounds.

Twitter: @mattcharboneau