Andres Romero double bogeyed the 11th hole Saturday after driving into a hazard. (McDermott/Getty Images)
By Brian Wacker, PGATOUR.COM
BETHESDA, Md. -- The 489-yard par-4 11th hole has played as the toughest at Congressional this week. It also could play a pivotal role in determining the outcome of the AT&T National.
"Tee shot's tough," said Jason Kokrak. "It's just a daunting tee shot downhill, but I think the second shot is one of the toughest in golf."
The numbers bear it out.
Just four birdies were made there in the opening round. Saturday, there were just five. Through three-plus rounds, there have been 191 pars and 134 bogeys or worse.
Among the latter: a triple bogey by Bill Haas, a double bogey by Andres Romero and bogeys by Kokrak -- who called it one of the toughest holes on the PGA TOUR -- each of the last two rounds.
"It's very penal, but the fairway's wide," said Castro, who drove it into a hazard there on Saturday. "It's a wide fairway with not much good. If you don't hit the fairway, you're not good."
Haas, who shares the lead with Castro, Romero and James Driscoll, found that out, too.
In the lead when he arrived there in the third round, Haas drove it in the right rough, played down the fairway for his second then hit it in the water right of the green on his next shot.
He went from leading the tournament to nearly out of it if not for three birdies over his next four holes.
"I think we make it harder on ourselves," Haas said. "It shouldn't be that hard. (Saturday) it was just a driver and a 6-iron probably, but I hit basically four terrible shots on one hole and it cost me bad."
And the hole might cost someone the tournament on Sunday.