Despite a rough second round, Rickie Fowler finds himself just three shots back from the lead heading into today’s final round at the Shell Houston Open.
Fowler led after day one, but went only one-under in a second-round that included three bogeys and a double bogey. Meanwhile, current leader Sung-hoon Kang had a terrific second day carding a one-under round of 63 to take a commanding six-shot lead.
Day Three on Saturday was looking great for Fowler, until the end. Through 16, Fowler was eight-under and tied with leader Kang. He tied the leader after his third straight birdie.
However, things fell apart for Fowler at the last two holes. He went bogey and double-bogey on 17 and 18, missing three putts of five feet or less.
It’s part of a concerning trend for Fowler, as he’s six-over on holes 15-18 over rounds two and three. He’ll have to play better than that down the stretch today to get a win.
The good news, Fowler is not in unfamiliar territory.
Overall, Fowler is having one of his best tournaments ever. He’s amassed 22 birdies so far, his most ever through three rounds of a PGA Tour event. His goal today? As he told the Golf Channel’s Will Gray, get to 30.
“We have 22. We’ll try to get to 30,” Fowler said. “We’ll see what we can do. It’s good to see the amount of offense this week, same thing at Bay Hill. I’ve been able to limit the amount of mistakes that I had at Bay Hill and turn that into a little bit more of a positive this week.”
Due to some inclement weather expected in the late morning to early afternoon, today’s tee times have been moved up to 7:15 a.m. to 9:15 a.m. central with threesomes off split tees. Fowler will be grouped with Kang and Russell Henley (only one stroke behind Fowler), teeing off at 9:05 a.m. as he goes for his second win this season.