Golf

BLAINE, Minn. — Cameron Tringale made a brief par putt on the treacherous par-5 18th gap on the 3M Open for a 5-under 66 and a one-stroke lead Saturday over Gary Woodland and Maverick McNealy.

Tringale, who tied for third final yr on the TPC Twin Cities, eagled the par-5 twelfth and had three birdies in a bogey-free spherical. Winless on the PGA Tour, the 33-year-old topped the crowded leaderboard at 12-under 201.

Woodland overcame a double bogey on No. 1 with birdies on 5 of his subsequent six holes in a 67. McNealy had a bogey-free 68.

Pat Perez shot a 66 to hitch an eight-way tie for fourth, two pictures off the lead. 4 gamers had been three strokes again. Louis Oosthuizen, the highest-ranked participant remaining at No. 9 on the planet and within the FedEx Cup standings, was in a six-way tie for sixteenth place at solely 4 pictures behind.

Throughout one more unseasonable day of 90-plus-degree warmth, the scores crept up all through the afternoon with the thermometer as drier and breezier air affected the play.

Keith Mitchell had a record-tying seven straight birdies to begin his spherical on his solution to a 29 on the again 9. The entrance 9? He posted a 37 for a 66 that left him 4 strokes behind Tringale. Rickie Fowler birdied six of his first 10 holes, earlier than a triple bogey on the 18th left him with a 70 and a tie for twenty ninth in a six-stroke deficit.

The mini-lake in entrance of the 18th gap swallowed up a number of balls. It is at present ranked as the toughest par 5 on the PGA Tour. There have been 9 bogeys and 12 scores worse than that Saturday.

Mitchell matched Juan Sebastián Muñoz (2020), Brandt Snedeker (2007) and Joe Durant (2005) with seven birdies in a row to start the spherical.

The 29-year-old Mitchell, whose solely profession PGA Tour victory got here within the Honda Basic in 2019, had his streak stopped when a putt lipped out on the seventeenth inexperienced. Then the recent air grew drier and breezier, forcing a extra conservative method. The momentum shift, he mentioned, was palpable. His tee shot on field No. 1 after the flip landed into the native grass space.

“I used to be like, ‘If I preserve swinging like this and executing like this, we will have an opportunity, after which the wind picked up and I clearly did not,'” mentioned Mitchell, who described his day as “two utterly totally different rounds.”

The primary half of his card was clearly a keeper.

“I truly felt some nerves slightly bit, however they had been good nerves. It was sort of nervous, not just like the ‘Hope I do not miss the cup’ nerves or ‘The place will we stand on the FedExCup’ nerves. It is extra of like, ‘Hey, I am in competition once more, and I wish to play nicely’ nerves, and people are the great form. These are the enjoyable form.”

With solely three tournaments remaining after this previous to the FedEx Cup playoffs, Mitchell is one in every of a number of golfers close to the 125-man lower who may use a powerful efficiency on Sunday to create a much bigger cushion. Mitchell entered the week ranked 114th. Perez was one hundred and fifteenth. Chez Reavie, who was two strokes behind Tringale, was 119th. Fowler was 124th.

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