PITTSFORD, NY – David Hearn's third round certainly was a colourful one. A look at his scorecard on the PGA.com website shows six birdies (those appear in blue), five bogeys (a light brown) and a double (a darker brown).
Add it all up and it spelled a tough day for the Brantford, Ont., resident who ended his day with that double and a score of 71.
After a great start to his week, Hearn has slipped each of the following two days, blaming his putter for the slide.
“The bottom line is I just didn't putt well enough today,” Hearn summarized. “Hopefully I can straighten that out (Sunday) and shoot a good score, maybe even get into red numbers.”
Hearn's day included missing some putts from knee-knock range on eight and nine, and then coming back with a solid birdie on the 10th after hitting his approach in to about six feet.
A hole later, his tee shot on the par-3 11th landed in some deep rough beside the green. He hacked it out, clanging it off the pin and dropping it into the hole for another birdie.
“I was just really trying to keep that one on the green,” he admitted. “To have it go in was a bonus.”
He added another birdie at the 15th but stumbled home with a bogey on the 17th before his unfortunate double at the last. Those two final holes played as the first and third toughest on the course respectively Saturday and ate up more than their fair share of players. Still, Hearn was hoping for a better ending to his day.
“I'm a little disappointed in my finish,” he stated. “I had a string of birdies going on the back nine, but 17 and 18 are just playing so long. They're really more like par 5s. On 17, for example, I hit driver, 3-wood just to get there. That's how long those holes are playing.”
Despite that finish, it didn't take Hearn long to put it behind him. He's able to laugh at himself for his hiccups and move on to the next challenge. It is, after all, only golf. It's his job and the way he makes his living, but he seems able to understand that getting upset over a bad finish is wasted energy.
Hearn still has work to do on Sunday, a move up the leaderboard will assist him in the year-end FedEx cup playoffs. It will also put some cash in bank, which, with an $8 million purse, can be significant.
Throw in some Official World Golf Ranking Points and even a few Presidents Cup points, and Sunday is an important day.
“My goal for [Sunday] is to try and get into red numbers for the day and maybe even the week,” Hearn stated. “If I can put together a real nice Sunday round, shoot three or four under, I can move up into a good spot.”
Even if that doesn't happen over the final 18 holes Hearn has certainly gained a lot this week. He's taken another step in his career that has been a slow and steady climb, a climb that is proving nothing but a success.