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July 14 2013

6:16 PM

Stricker had 60 or 61 in mind

By Craig DeVrieze, Special to PGATOUR.COM

SILVIS, Ill. – Steve Stricker is 100-under par at TPC Deere Run since 2009.

He wishes that were 105 under.

A winner of the John Deere Classic three times in succession from 2009-2011, Stricker caused a buzz around the place with his fifth birdie of the day midway through the final round.

At 16 under, he was three back of defending champion Zach Johnson and thinking about making it four John Deere trophies in five years.

A bogey at the par-3 16th stalled his charge and the 46-year-old Wisconsinite settled for a 5-under round of 66.

It wasn’t what he had in mind at day’s start, he said.

“I thought today I could shoot 61 or 60 like I have here in the past but you’ve got to do that without any mistakes,” he said. “I figured if I could get to 21, who knows.”

Didn’t happen. Now, the Stricker heads back to Wisconsin to celebrate his anniversary, but with a bit of angst over his decision at the beginning of the year to bypass this week’s Open Championship.

“I’m thinking that it wasn’t the smartest move maybe to miss the British Open but it’s my 20th anniversary this week and we have a family vacation planned with another family up north,” he said. “All good reasons to miss. I’ll be watching it intently and probably wish I’ll be there in some regard but I’m happy with my decision what I’m doing and I have been all year.”

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