BLAINE, Minn. — Michael Thompson has not experienced the stress and delight of playing with the final round of a championship at the last group for many decades.
This moment, pitted against Richy Werenski from the 3M Open, he will do this with no murmuring, clapping and roaring sounds from your audiences. For Thompson, that will do just fine.
“It kind of lets me maintain my feelings even keel. That is kind of how I play golf. That is exactly what I like to perform on the golf program,” Thompson stated. “I really don’t talk very much, and occasionally if I get too swept up or confronted with a tricky shot facing a great deal of folks, I get a bit anxious. I am not going to lie about that. It is just that I am. I believe no fans, it is going to let me be composed.”
Werenski birdied three of the final four holes Saturday to divert a four-stroke shortage and grab Thompson for the guide. After discussing the halfway guide, Thompson and Werenski traveled enormously different avenues to every shoot 3-under 68. They walked into the clubhouse again, tied 15 below in the TPC Twin Cities.
“There is still a great deal of golf left. I just kind of want to keep hanging about, and something happens,” Werenski explained.
Charl Schwartzel shot a 66 from the next round, bringing even with Tony Finau for third position in 13 under. Max Homa submitted a 64, which makes a major leap to fifth 12 under.
Thompson, who entered the week nicely under the cut to the FedEx Cup Playoffs at 151st place, created three successive birdies on the front nine of the 228th career launch. The 35-year old, whose only tour victory was in the Honda Classic in Florida at 2013, knocked in a different one about the 590-lawn, par-5 12th hole to proceed to 16 under.
Thompson held a four-stroke guide before the 15th, when his match on the greens suddenly faltered. His 8-foot putt for birdie went , and he settled for par.
Werenski, that had been one place off the FedEx Cup cut last year and came to Minnesota at 89th place, birdied the 15th hole to move up. So did their playing spouse Finau, making up to three sooner bogeys.
Thompson gathered a 15-footer overly long on the 17th green, also, taking only his second bogey of the whole championship as a light rain started to fall on a different muggy and breezy day in this suburb north of Minneapolis as the heat index reached the top 90s.
Thompson, whose best finish with this coronavirus pandemic-interrupted tour program was a tie for eighth in the RBC Heritage at South Carolina, began 18th with much more trouble by hitting his drive to the beverage. You will find 248 balls hit to water dangers over Thursday and Friday, the most through two rounds on the PGA Tour this year.
Thompson’s next attempt after the punishment stroke landed in the greenside bunker, but he saved par with a clutch processor from the sand which landed 7 feet in the cup. He pumped his arm gave his caddie a fast fist bulge, the only display of emotion about the silent green.
Werenski, whose 63 from the initial round is tied to the very low score of the championship, birdied that hole. That setup their Sunday duel using a couple of opponents well within striking distance.
Including Schwartzel, the 35-year old South African that has two career tour successes. He missed an eagle on the 18th, when his 70-foot shot in the bible almost dropped .
“It was a slow-motion lip-out,” said Schwartzel, who’s the only participant to generate birdie or better on each par-5 hole this week, first time in his excursion career he has done so.
Homa, who missed the cut in four of his previous five starts, had eight birdies.
“I figure it has been, I do not know, four or two months because I have been in any sort of heat aside from the cut heating, therefore it was sort of nice to just continue doing what I was doing in the start of the year,” said Homa, who bogeyed the 17th.
Cameron Tringale created four birdies and an eagle over his first eight holes on how to linking his career low score using a 63, many recently published in 2011. He had just 25 putts, providing herself an outside chance for his first tour win.
“Golf’s a game of assurance. I really like where I am at. I really like where my match’s at,” Tringale said. “Sundays are another day, so I am excited about the chance.”