Billy Hurley III carded a bogey-free 4-under 67 Saturday and will take a two-shot lead over Ernie Els into the final round of the Quicken Loans National on Sunday. Here's where things stand through 54 holes at Congressional.
What it means: Hurley, 607th in the world, is seeking his first professional victory since a win on the Hooters Tour in 2010. The 34-year-old former Naval [ieutenant has made only five cuts in a meager 11 starts this year and hasn't finished better than a tie for 41st. Hurley was in the public eye last summer when during a press conference at the Quicken Loans National he asked for help in finding his missing father, who died two weeks later of a self-inflicted gunshot wound at the age of 61. Hurley is a resident of Annapolis, Maryland, roughly an hour from Congressional. This is his second 54-hole lead; the first came at The Greenbrier in 2014 when he shot 3 over on Sunday to lose by seven to Angel Cabrera. He'll be chased on Sunday by a 46-year-old, 19-time Tour winner in Els, who won the U.S. Open at Congressional in 1997, and a 21-year-old Tour rookie in Rahm, who is making his professional debut this week after earning low-amateur honors last week at Oakmont.
Round of the day: The Big Easy was bogey-free en route to a 6-under 65. Els made three straight birdies on Nos. 6-8 and followed up on his back nine with a hole-out for eagle on 12 and a birdie on 14.
Best of the rest: Aaron Baddeley and Wes Roach both shot 5-under 66 to vault themselves 37 spots into a tie for 10th. Both players made six birdies against a single bogey. Both are in the hunt for invitations to the Open Championship.
Biggest disappointment: Rickie Fowler took himself out of contention with a 2-over 73 to fall back to 4 under for the week. Fowler made two birdies against four bogeys, the last of which came at the 18th hole. His score was the worst of any player in the top 34.
Shot of the day: Els' 9-iron from 160 yards at the par-4 12th for an eagle-2.
Quote of the day: "I'm enjoying putting." - Els, who appears to have shaken the yips that took hold of him during a disastrous 6-putt at this year's Masters.
Storyline to watch heading into Sunday: The Quicken Loans National is part of the Open Qualifying Series, which awards spots in the Open Championship to players not already qualified. The four best players who finish inside the top 12 on Sunday and who aren't already qualified will earn invitations to Royal Troon. Through 54 holes, those players would be Hurley, Rahm, Harold Varner III and Vijay Singh.