Tony Finau's run of top-10 finishes in major tournaments likely will end this weekend, but only after the Salt Lake City native has staged another spectacular performance.
Finau shot a 1-under par 69 in Saturday's third round of the PGA Championship at Bellerive Country Club in St. Louis, leaving him tied for 57th place. But what he did to make the 36-hole cut will be remembered – and probably improved his chances of being picked for the U.S. team in the Ryder Cup.
Finau completed his adventurous second round Saturday morning, finishing with 10 birdies in a 4-under-par 66 that was good enough to make the cut. He tied Gary Player’s record for the most birdies in a round in the PGA Championship.
Resuming his weather-delayed round on the 12th hole Saturday, the Lehi resident made two more birdies and two bogeys to finish. His scorecard showed 10 birdies, a triple bogey, three bogeys and four pars.
Finau decribed the round as “an emotional roller coaster.” He added, “A lot happened, but to post 10 birdies in a major championship is pretty special.”
He ended up playing the first three rounds with U.S. Ryder Cup captain Jim Furyk. Watching Finau make all those birdies, Furyk “didn't say anything, but he was just shaking his head,” Finau said. “... It was the craziest round I think he's ever seen.”
In the third round, Finau made four birdies and three bogeys. He’s the first Utah resident to make the cut in all four majors in one year since Sandy’s Mike Weir in 2008.
The two Utah club professionals in the field each ended up at 5 over par, missing the cut. Glenwild Golf Club’s Craig Hocknull shot 72-73 and Davis Park Golf Course’s Zach Johnson posted 76-69.