The Canadian Press - ONLINE EDITION

3 years late, US Open conditions arrive at Congressional at Quicken Loans National

  • Print

BETHESDA, Md. - Three years after hosting a U.S. Open, Congressional Country Club is finally playing like a U.S. Open.

Thick rough and fast, firm greens kept the scores high Saturday at the Quicken Loans National. There were no bogey-free rounds, and the average score was 72.48 on the par-71 layout.

"At the start of the day, we probably knew that anything under par was going to be a really good score," said Marc Leishman, who shot a third-round 73 but was only two strokes off the lead. "I actually said to my caddie on the back nine, 'It feels a bit like a U.S. Open' because there were a few pins that you really didn't have a chance to get at.

"But I think that's good. You know it's a tough golf course. It's long. If you're not in the fairway, you have no chance. If you are on the fairway and you hit a good shot, you can make birdie. I think it's great to change it up like that occasionally where par is a really good score."

When the U.S. Open was last played at the course in 2011, humid weather stunted the growth of the rough leading up to the event, then heavy rains soaked the course and made the greens receptive. Rory McIlroy broke a record by shooting 16 under for the tournament.

It's safe to say no one will approach that score Sunday. Leader Patrick Reed was 6 under after a 71 on Saturday.

Justin Rose, who won the U.S. Open at Merion last year, was rooting for similar conditions for the final round. At 3 under, he was one of 10 players within three shots of the lead.

"The only fear I have is it's such a bunched leaderboard that if they dump some water on the golf course and we still get a hot day like we did today, someone could really come out early tomorrow and post a number," Rose said, "which I think won't really suit the leaders too much. Obviously I'd be a fan of them letting them go a little bit and making this a tough tournament and sort of having another U.S. Open."

Rose had an eventful day: five birdies, three bogeys and one double bogey, including a bogey-birdie-birdie-bogey finish.

"That's what I've said all week," Rose said, "that (what) I enjoy about this golf course is that par is often a good score. And it became a really good score this afternoon."

___

AUSSIES HANG TOUGH: There were two Australians in Saturday's final group, one veteran and one who has just arrived on the tour.

The experienced one — Leishman — fared better with a 73, but the 76 from Oliver Goss was hardly an embarrassment given the difficult conditions at Congressional.

Goss is playing his second tournament as a pro after two years at the University of Tennessee. He was the low amateur at the Masters in April.

"He bombs it off the tee," Leishman said. "Really, really rips it. Doesn't look like he's swinging that hard at it. I saw him from a distance for the first time on Thursday and saw him hit a shot and thought, 'Doesn't look like he is swinging it hard.' But today he was smashing it."

Goss' challenging day included a 3-putt from 10 feet for a double bogey at No. 12.

"Today a few tap-ins, they got away from him," Leishman said. "But I think that's the stuff you learn from, be a bit more careful. Yeah, I think he's got a bright future."

___

FREDDIE'S FASHION: Freddie Jacobson broke out the lavender knickers Saturday, a fashion statement that was pretty cool — literally.

"It's been kind of hot this week here," the Swede said. "So I thought, let's air it out a little bit this weekend and bring them out."

___

ACE YOUR MORTGAGE: Peter Hanson's hole-in-one was worth a load of house payments.

The Swede aced the par-3 second hole with a 4-iron from 222 yards Saturday, winning a year's worth of mortgage payments for Arline Deacon of Fayetteville, Georgia, in a contest conducted by tournament's sponsor, Quicken Loans.

It was Hanson's first hole-in-one on the PGA Tour and the 11th on the tour this season.

"It was always kind of a weird feeling to see the ball disappear," Hanson said. "Everybody that played the game that had a hole-in-one knows what it's like, and it's a great feeling."

___

Follow Joseph White on Twitter: http://twitter.com/JGWhiteAP

Fact Check

Fact Check

Have you found an error, or know of something we’ve missed in one of our stories?
Please use the form below and let us know.

* Required
  • Please post the headline of the story or the title of the video with the error.

  • Please post exactly what was wrong with the story.

  • Please indicate your source for the correct information.

  • Yes

    No

  • This will only be used to contact you if we have a question about your submission, it will not be used to identify you or be published.

  • Cancel

Having problems with the form?

Contact Us Directly
  • Print

You can comment on most stories on winnipegfreepress.com. You can also agree or disagree with other comments. All you need to do is be a Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscriber to join the conversation and give your feedback.

You can comment on most stories on winnipegfreepress.com. You can also agree or disagree with other comments. All you need to do is be a Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscriber to join the conversation and give your feedback.

Have Your Say

New to commenting? Check out our Frequently Asked Questions.

Have Your Say

Comments are open to Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscribers only. why?

Have Your Say

Comments are open to Winnipeg Free Press Subscribers only. why?

The Winnipeg Free Press does not necessarily endorse any of the views posted. By submitting your comment, you agree to our Terms and Conditions. These terms were revised effective April 16, 2010.

letters

Make text: Larger | Smaller

LATEST VIDEO

O'Shea says the team is going to stick to the plan after first loss

View more like this

Photo Store Gallery

  • An American White Pelican takes flight from the banks of the Red River in Lockport, MB. A group of pelicans is referred to as a ‘pod’ and the American White Pelican is the only pelican species to have a horn on its bill. May 16, 2012. SARAH O. SWENSON / WINNIPEG FREE PRESS
  • A goose heads for shade in the sunshine Friday afternoon at Woodsworth Park in Winnipeg - Day 26– June 22, 2012   (JOE BRYKSA / WINNIPEG FREE PRESS)

View More Gallery Photos

Poll

Who are the real Bombers?

View Results

Ads by Google