Seamus Power found himself in the slow lane on a record-setting third-round on ‘moving day’ at the Sentry Tournament of Champions on the Plantation course in Maui.
World No. 1 and current U.S. Open winner Jon Rahm set a new course record of 12-under par 61 to join Aussie Cameron Smith, who shot a 64, in the lead at 26-under par in what is a 54-hole tournament low.
Also posting a sizzling 61 was American Justin Thomas who only managed to move two dozen places and into a share of eighth place at 17-under-par.
The PGA Tour indicates that 26-under-par is the second-lowest 54-total and just a shot shy of the all-time low of 27-under par set by Patrick Reed at the 2014 WGC – American Express Championship.
Power’s four-under-par 69 saw the Irishman drop 11 places and back into a share of 19th place at 14-under-par and now 12 shots off the lead heading to the final round in Hawaii.
Power’s round of four birdies was blemish-free but in the bigger picture, his 69 was two shots more than the overall third day scoring average of 67.711 which is the lowest single-day scoring average since the event moved to the Plantation course in 1999.
The West Waterford golfer had produced two eagles in his superb second round 65 but then as we know in golf, two days are never the same.
“I didn’t really make any mistakes but I just never got it going and looking at the scores you really needed to,” said Power.
“It was a bit disappointing but I didn’t make any bogeys which was nice. I hit a lot of good shots but I wasn’t able to get it going on the greens and obviously when the scoring is this low, you’ve got to make the 15 footers and I wasn’t able to do that today.”
Power birdied the fifth hole and then also the 14th and 15th before launching a 385-yard drive at the downhill final hole and after finding a greenside bunker with his second shot, he splashed out to seven feet and holed the birdie putt.
While Power is now well back in a goal to finish top-three that would see him likely break into the world’s top-50, a low last round will be ideal for him to take to this coming week’s Sony Open, also in Hawaii.
“I’ll just be trying to do much of the same thing and if I hit it like I did today and knock some putts, you can shoot something in the low 60s and turn it into a good week,” he said.
“I’m a long way back so it’s just a case of going as low as you can and seeing what happens.”
Rahm’s round was near perfect posting an eagle and 11 birdies and playing the closing five holes in six-under-par with the only hiccup for the double Irish Open and Spanish Open champion a bogey at the fourth hole.
“The first few holes are birdieable, but you come out the gates, it’s almost like a little bit of a warmup and then you get to five, and with a good tee shot it’s reachable and very accessible, actually,” he said.
“I hit a 9-iron today and yesterday. So, it kind of gets you going. You get on the birdie train and things like today can happen. It’s the second 61 of the day and whatever it looks like the 35th 9-under of the week as well, right?
“It’s definitely a doable golf course, but you still have to hit the shots, and come tomorrow we gotta keep doing the same thing. We had a fun battle today and I’m guessing tomorrow’s going to be more of the same. We’re going to need a lot of birdies to get ahead and get the win.”
- Full scoring HERE