St. SIMONS ISLAND, Georgia — Ludvig Åberg He had 4 birdies and an eagle in a five-hole stretch on the again 9 on Saturday, not a lot to drag away however merely to maintain tempo. He shot 9-under 61 for a 1-stroke lead on a rare low-scoring day on the RSM Traditional.
Aberg, the rising Swedish star who solely turned professional in June after ending at Texas Tech, completed forward of the pack as he seeks his first PGA Tour victory.
“I continued to be affected person and fortunately right this moment it paid off,” Aberg stated. “You have got quite a lot of wedges on the again 9, after which 15 is a reachable par 5. I felt like I used to be hitting the ball nicely. I used to be hitting the fairways, apart from 14, however apart from that, I felt like I used to be hitting.” “I took the ball nicely and took benefit of the marginally simpler circumstances right this moment.”
He was 20-under 192, one shot forward of Cole (61) and two forward of Hughes (60).
Aberg started his nice profession with an 8-foot birdie putt on the thirteenth. He chipped in from 75 ft on the subsequent gap, made a 15-foot eagle putt on the par-5 fifteenth, holed an 8-footer on the sixteenth and He capped it off with a tee shot that landed a foot in need of the opening on the par-3 seventeenth.
Everybody else was doing the identical.
As for gamers who say they don’t seem to be conscious of the potential for capturing 59, Hughes is not one in all them.
“After I made eagle 15, I believed if I may run the board, it might be 59,” he stated. “I used to be type of licking my 18. However sadly, it did not work out.”
He positive tried, following the eagle with a pair of birdie putts from the 12-foot vary and looking out nicely simply exterior 15 ft on the 18th gap. Hughes thought the putt would break barely left, nevertheless it stayed towards proper and took off his cap in disbelief.
“I am excited,” stated Hughes, who additionally shot 60 within the first spherical of the Vacationers Championship in 2020. “However you’ll be able to’t assist however really feel somewhat disillusioned. You aren’t getting an opportunity to shoot 59 very nicely.” “Usually. You have got a putt like that, you simply wish to bury it.”
Proper behind him was Cole, reducing in and making it look straightforward. Nothing was easy on the par-5 fifteenth, the place his tee shot bounced out of a bunker and stayed near the sting. He hit it low and exhausting and watched it race towards the inexperienced, inches from the cup and settle to inside simply over 3 ft for an eagle that allowed him to regain the lead.
Aberg had the ultimate say on Saturday.
It may very well be fairly a battle on Sunday at Sea Island.
Cole is taken into account a favourite for the PGA Tour Rookie of the 12 months award for his constant play, reaching the second stage of the FedEx Cup playoffs and already assured of being in each $20 million marquee occasion subsequent 12 months. . A victory would seal that honor.
Aberg’s victory may give him the nod, particularly contemplating his quick season. He was the primary participant on the PGA Tour College, incomes him a tour card. He already has three high 10s, alongside together with his first skilled win on the European Masters, which secured him a spot on the Ryder Cup crew for Europe. He now tries to shut out the PGA Tour season with a victory.
The RSM Traditional is the ultimate occasion of the PGA Tour season, and the highest 125 will earn full playing cards for 2024. ryan moore He got here in at 128th, after a tie for fifth on the Bermuda Championships final week, and shot 62. He was 7 photographs behind, in all probability too far again to catch Aberg, however in fine condition to maintain his card.