Rahm eyes another comeback in California
January 19, 2019
By Sean Martin, PGATOUR.COM
Jon Rahm interview after Round 3 of Desert Classic
LA QUINTA, Calif. – Jon Rahm will need another final-round comeback if he wants to win the Desert Classic for a second consecutive year.
Rahm shot 68 at PGA West’s Stadium Course on Saturday. At 16-under 196 (66-66-68), he is six shots behind 54-hole leader Phil Mickelson.
Rahm made eight birdies Saturday but also had two bogeys.
“It was good,” Rahm said. “I would say it was a B, B-plus. … The first five holes is what cost me, going 1 over par on those holes, hitting it pretty good. It was the one part of the course that if I had shot 1 or 2 under like you can, it would have been a great round.”
Rahm started his round with four consecutive pars before hitting his second shot on the par-5 fifth hole into the water and making bogey. He birdied his next two holes, though.
MUST READS: Round 3, Desert Classic
Phil Mickelson takes a lead into Sunday for just the second time since 2013.
Adam Hadwin has finished no worse than sixth at La Quinta in the past three years.
Charlie Reiter carded eight birdies and an eagle to just miss the third round cut.
The Stadium Course will host the Desert Classic’s final round Sunday. Large swings are possible on the water-lined fairways of the Pete Dye design, but Mickelson has just one over-par hole thus far this week. He made double-bogey in the second round after hitting his approach into the water on the Nicklaus Tournament Course’s 18th hole. Mickelson shot a bogey-free 66 at the Stadium Course on Saturday.
“I’m going to need to play really well and I’m going to need the leaders to have a slow start, but anything can happen,” said Rahm, who’s 69th in the FedExCup standings.
Southern California has been the site of Rahm’s two TOUR wins. He overcame a final-round deficit in each win, as well.
Rahm was three behind when he started the final round of the 2017 Farmers Insurance Open. He won by three shots after shooting a 65 that included eagles on Torrey Pines’ two back-nine par-5s.
He was two back after the first three rounds of last year’s Desert Classic. He shot 67 on Sunday, then beat Andrew Landry in a playoff.
Jon Rahm uses nice tee shot to yield birdie at Desert Classic