US Open 2017: Jordan Spieth 'took an L' with poor third round

Solenn Plantier
Juin 19, 2017

He didn't have to wait long to discover that things would be different.

"I birdied the first two holes, but those were tap-ins". I couldn't possibly shoot any higher than I did, I just struggled on the greens. And I felt the most calm I have in a major in a long time this week. He got that up-and-down for a bogey and a 68.

The par-4 15th was set up as a drivable hole - downwind and only 288 yards.

That increased the likelihood of a seventh successive major producing a first-time victor, although the likes of Masters champion Sergio Garcia and Martin Kaymer - who claimed U.S. Open glory in 2014 - were handily placed four off the pace. Fowler shot a 73 and was still very much in the hunt at a second straight major. "Getting home; how's that?" he said with little apparent humor.

When it came down to it, though, Day admitted his lack of execution cost him.

Kisner, and much of the field, have had no love for that fescue rough, which he said "just grabs your club so bad in your backswing, you've got no chance when (the club is) coming down. I made five birdies today, which that's a lot of birdies around here for me".

"You get going in that hay, and you can't get out of it". If only he had hit the fairways. "I've seen guys hit it on the green from there, and I've seen guys not able to hit it at all".

"It was still gettable", said Charley Hoffman, who has posted 70-70 and is three shots out of the lead.

Dustin Johnson, Rory McIlroy and Jason Day - the top three players in the world, all of them professing expansive Erin Hills to be ideal for their games - spent Friday cleaning out their lockers after missing the cut. Moments before Kisner finished with a valiant par-save at the par-5 18, 2016 Open champion Jordan Spieth turned in his own 4-over 76. This game's all about putting, so it's pretty simple, I just didn't get it in the hole fast enough. "But it's tough. It's long, believe me". With its great length, Erin Hills has played to the strength of the long hitters, especially Saturday after overnight rains softened the course. Before assuming Kisner blamed all his Saturday woes on the course setup, here's the rest of the story.

"I hit the ball better than yesterday".

"I'm optimistic with where my game is", he said.

Last year's victor and world number one Johnson, who arrived late in Wisconsin after staying in California for the birth of his second child, added a one-over-par 73 to his opening 75 to finish on four-over 148, three off the cut line. Three weeks ago, Kisner won the Dean & DeLuca (formerly the Colonial) for his second career victory, and already has six Top-10 finishes, including at such stout layouts as Pebble Beach (tie-10), Bay Hill (tie-second) and Muirfield Village (tie-sixth). I've never a led US Open, so it will be a very cool experience. "But obviously, I haven't done that here. I always take a lot of comfort in that fact".

To realize what most observers believe is his potential, he does.

Around 70 minutes earlier, compatriot Patrick Reed had faced a similar length putt to Thomas on the 18th to shoot eight under but missed his birdie attempt and had to settle for a 65. "That's pretty bad", he agreed.

"That means I'm a part of history", he said. It was one of his four top-10 finishes between the European and PGA Tours this season.

Sixty-eight players made the cut, with former champion Webb Simpson, former Masters and British Open victor Zach Johnson and former PGA champion Keegan Bradley all making it on the number. But he knew it wouldn't be this week.

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