McCarthy among low am­a­teurs af­ter three rounds

The Washington Post Sunday - - SPORTS - BY DAVE SHEININ dave.sheinin@wash­post.com

univer­sity place, wash. — Denny McCarthy, a prod­uct of Georgetown Prep and the Univer­sity of Vir­ginia who got into the field through sec­tional qual­i­fy­ing, shot a 1-over-par 71 on Satur­day and, at 5-over-par 215 through three rounds, is only one shot off the lead in the race for low am­a­teur at the U.S. Open. He trails Ol­lie Schniederjans and Jack Maguire, both at 214, en­ter­ing Sun­day’s fi­nal round. In all, six am­a­teurs made the cut, the most since 1966.

“I don’t re­ally have any ex­pec­ta­tions,” McCarthy said af­ter Satur­day’s round. “I’m just here to en­joy the week. It’s been a hell of an ex­pe­ri­ence so far. . . . I’m in full tour­na­ment mode and I’m re­ally fo­cused. It’s been a great week so far. I’m go­ing to go out there and en­joy the last round.”

Par back to 5 on No. 18

The 18th hole at Cham­bers Bay, the source of much de­bate dur­ing Fri­day’s sec­ond round, was back to a par-5 on Satur­day. The U.S. Golf As­so­ci­a­tion has been flip-flop­ping the pars on holes 1 and 18. On Fri­day, No. 18 played as a par-4 and had play­ers grum­bling over its fair­ness— or lack thereof. The top 11 play­ers on the leader board at the end of the sec­ond round played it in a com­bined 8 over par Fri­day.

The USGA hasn’t sig­naled its in­ten­tions, but it is ex­pected to make 18 a par-4 again for Sun­day’s fi­nal round.

Put­ter fails McIl­roy

Rory McIl­roy, the top-ranked player in the world, had his best ball-strik­ing round of the tour­na­ment Satur­day but was be­trayed by his put­ter, re­sult­ing in an even-par 70 that could have been some­thing spe­cial.

“I feel like I turned a 65 into a 70 to­day,” he said. “When­ever I start to miss a cou­ple, I start to get a lit­tle ten­ta­tive and start to doubt my­self and doubt the greens a lit­tle bit, and it snow­balls from there.

“Once I missed a cou­ple, it got into my head and I couldn’t re­ally get out of it.”

Sten­son eats his words

One day af­ter equat­ing Cham­bers Bay’s greens as “like putting on broc­coli,” Swe­den’s Hen­rik Sten­son had a lit­tle Twit­ter fun, post­ing a pic­ture of his lunch Satur­day — fea­tur­ing a big pile of broc­coli — with the words, “Ev­ery par is a win­ner!”

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