McCarthy among low amateurs after three rounds
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!”