Rocco rolling the rock


Rocco Mediate’s back to the short putter this week at the Open and he’s in position to become the oldest winner on the PGA Tour this year thanks perhaps to a putting tip he received from 31-year-old fellow pro Scott Piercy at the Viking Classic.

“He asked if I’d mind if he showed me something. I knew he knows what he’s talking about because he can do it. I said sure,” said Mediate.

Piercy put Rocco on a chalk line to demonstrate to him he was “outside, open and up,” according to Rocco. So far his revised putting stroke is working.

“It made a huge impact. Now I’m back where I need to be,” Mediate said.

After 27 putts Thursday Rocco needed only 23 in Round 2 and enters the final round after 25 swipes at it on Saturday. Rocco also has gotten a little tutelage from Lee Trevino. Earlier this year the Merry Mex helped him work on improving his fade as opposed to Rocco’s usual draw.

“I spent four or five hours with him and learned so much about moving the ball to the right,” said Mediate. “I’m a natural drawer, but I wanted to be able to do that at will. At will, no problem. The time he spent with me was priceless. Fortunate enough to [work with] one of the best hitters that ever walked on grass.”

In Round 3 Rocco hit all but one fairway and at the moment is third in the field in driving accuracy, second in putts per green in regulation, and leads the field in putts per round.

But he’s not just rolling the rock. Rocco has holed out for eagle in all three rounds coming into Sunday. He aced the par-3 third hole on Thursday, holed out from 160 at the par-4 fourth Friday, and holed a pitching wedge from 111 yards Saturday at the par-5 15th. He’s the first players to card three eagles in a tournament since Tiger Woods performed the hattrick at the 1998 Sprint International.