Harsh situations batter gamers at U.S. Open and Mom Nature isn’t going to let up within the closing spherical

BROOKLINE, Mass. – Summer gave option to fall on Saturday as a entrance moved in on Beantown and left gamers within the third spherical of the U.S. Open at The Country Club scrambling to remain heat and struggling to remain related on the leaderboard.

After basking in sunshine and temps within the 70s and 80s many of the first two rounds, the sky turned grey; temps dipped into the low 60s; and winds have been regular at 15 mph, gusts at 20 mph and there have been occasional blasts exceeding 30 mph.

And come Sunday for the ultimate spherical? It’s going to be depraved chilly.

“This is how a U.S. Open should be,” Justin Thomas mentioned after a 73. “It’s very difficult. Par is great score on a lot of holes. Bogeys aren’t going to kill you. We don’t do this very often, and I think it’s very, very fitting and totally acceptable to have this kind of test and this difficult setup for a U.S. Open, and it’s strictly because of conditions.

“The greens are getting firm. It’s windy, and it should be tough.”

There was a variety of turbulence on the leaderboard, too. When the day broke, 23 gamers have been underneath par. When the ultimate putt was hit, 9 have been.

The scoring common was simply shy of 73.50; about 0.75 strokes increased that the primary spherical and 1.50 increased than the second spherical. Some of the sport’s finest gamers took a beating, together with Collin Morikawa, who went from the in a single day result in a tie for 17th with a 77. U.S. Open champion in 2020, Bryson DeChambeau, shot 76. Two-time U.S. Open champion Brooks Koepka, Xander Schauffele and Patrick Reed every shot 75.

2022 U.S. Open

2022 U.S. Open

Scottie Scheffler performs his shot from the primary tee in the course of the third spherical of the U.S. Open golf event. (Photo: Peter Casey-USA TODAY Sports)

“That was brutal,” Will Zalatoris mentioned. And he shot the low spherical of the day, a 3-under-par 67 to place him atop the leaderboard with Matt Fitzpatrick. “It took a lot of discipline today. We didn’t aim at a single flag even with some wedges just because you really only have a foot or two to deal with on these greens in some situations. Normally guys out here when they have wedges in their hand, they’re firing at pins no matter what the situation was, but it’s just a lot of patience and giving myself as many 15- to 25-footers as I could.”

Zalatoris mentioned there have been large modifications from the times earlier than, declaring that he had 312 yards to the inexperienced for his second shot on the par-5 14th within the second spherical and, due to the wind, had simply 258 on Saturday.

“This place is a beast,” he mentioned. “I think the biggest thing for me (Sunday), obviously, there’s a ton of major champions on this leaderboard, and by no means is the job done. Not even close. But just keep doing what I’m doing. Make sure I just get myself on the green as fast as I can or at least minimize the mistakes.”

The world’s finest participant wasn’t immune from the situations as Scottie Scheffler went 4 consecutive holes with out making a par or higher for the primary time for the reason that second spherical of The Players in March. The Masters champion and winner of three different tournaments this yr shot 71 and is 2 again.

“There’s a lot of trees on this golf course, and it’s gusty, as well. So it’s definitely unpredictable,” Scheffler mentioned of the wind. “I think that’s what happens when you get these kind of foresty golf courses, and then with the gusts, I mean, that little golf ball is just getting thrown around all over the place.”

Fitzpatrick placed on solar cream earlier than the spherical.

“I was thinking, oh, it’s going to get nice and warm, but quite the opposite by the end of the day,” he mentioned after his 68. “The wind was strong. Wind was really strong. It made it tough. You had to be switched on with the way you were hitting it, where you were missing it.

“I think that was why it was a great challenge, and really happy with my score.”

Anybody shall be proud of a 68 within the closing spherical. The excessive is forecast to be within the excessive 50s, winds shall be regular and gusting with energy (making it appear colder) and sunshine shouldn’t be within the forecast.

“You can’t play defensive on this golf course. You almost have to play aggressively defensive,” Zalatoris mentioned. “You’ve got to be hitting a lot of shots towards the middle of the greens. Still no cakewalks. 9-, 8-, 7-irons into this place, you can make a mess real fast.

“It’s just going to be really tough tomorrow.”

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