Rahm 2 back from Ryder to Torrey for 3rd straight win
SAN DIEGO (AP) — Jon Rahm made an impressive charge up the leaderboard on his favorite course with a 6-under 66 on Friday, which is now moving day at Torrey Pines, to shoot within two shots of the leader Sam Ryder after the third round of the Farmers Insurance Open.
Rahm, ranked No. 3 in the world, is 18 holes away from potentially earning his third consecutive start and taking over at No. 1 for the first time since March 20. He started Friday at 4-under and tied for 14th, and moved into sole possession of second place after an eagle on the par-5 ninth hole that capped his second four-hole streak at 5-under in two days.
As Rahm warmed up on a beautiful, calm day on the Municipal Course overlooking the Pacific Ocean, Ryder pared his final 12 holes for a 72, missing a 10-foot birdie putt on the par-5 18. Ryder was 12 under 204 on 54 holes while Rahm was 10 under.
Tony Finau, 12 strokes back when he started his third round on the back nine, turned 4-under 32, then made his approach from 138 yards on the par-4 first hole for an eagle . He shot an 8-under 64, the best round of the week on the south course, to move into third place, four shots back.
Sungjae Im won No. 18 for a 67 and was five strokes behind Collin Morikawa (70), Max Homa (71) and Sahith Theegala (71).
The tournament has been played Wednesday through Saturday for the past two years to avoid the final round against NFL conference championship games.
It was an adventurous three days for Rahm at Torrey Pines, where he claimed his first PGA Tour victory in 2017 and then won the US Open in 2021 for his first major.
Rahm said Torrey Pines has been his go-to spot since “before I did anything, really. It is a beautiful golf course. It obviously matches my strengths and I think because I like it so much, I did very well here.
Rahm was tied for 116th after going the first round at 1 of 73 on the south course. He was one off the cut line with five holes to play in his second round on the windy Santa Ana North Course on Thursday before making an eagle and three consecutive birdies. He has played his last 23 holes in less than 11 years.
The Spanish star played the front nine on the south course, which hosts the final two rounds, in 5-under 31 on Friday thanks to three consecutive birdies and then an eagle on 9.
He said his second shot on the ninth, a 289-yard tie, “was already a candidate for the best shot of the year for me. I was just hoping to catch it in the center of the green but I mean I tattooed that 5 wood and ended up getting 10 feet for the eagle which you don’t really expect on this pin back, but I ended up putting myself in a great spot and made the putt.
“I’m a very aggressive player by nature, so nothing really changes,” said Rahm, who won the Sentry Tournament of Champions in Kapalua three weekends ago and The American Express in the Coachella Valley over the weekend. end last. “I kind of stay true to who I am and the difference between that and the next four holes was just getting better swings at the right time.”
Rahm is battling for his 10th PGA Tour win. Ryder, 33, is looking for his first.
“I’m pretty calm, honestly,” Rahm said. “Yeah, there’s pressure for obvious things, but I’ve won my last two tournaments, so I have no reason not to believe I can do it one more time. I’ve done it beautifully. rocked all week and it just keeps getting better, so hopefully tomorrow I can do what needs to be done.
Ryder shared the lead with two others after the first round and was up three strokes after 36 holes.
“Today is just a different level of pressure,” he said. “I didn’t feel like I had to try to move anything or press, you know, so I didn’t freak out when I bogeyed 2 and just adjusted to the lap and I kind of had a feeling of where I was with my swing and my game. Starting the day with a lead, ending the day with a lead, pretty satisfied.
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