Memorial Tournament 2020: Jon Rahm Fires 68, Takes 4-Shot Lead into Final Round

Adam Wells@adamwells1985Featured ColumnistJuly 18, 2020

Jon Rahm, of Spain, hits from the 18th tee during the third round of the Memorial golf tournament, Saturday, July 18, 2020, in Dublin, Ohio. (AP Photo/Darron Cummings)
Darron Cummings/Associated Press

Jon Rahm has taken control of the 2020 Memorial Tournament in Dublin, Ohio, after carding a four-under-par 68 in Saturday's third round.

Starting the day in third place, Rahm dropped his 54-hole score to 12-under and is four shots in front of Ryan Palmer and Tony Finau for the lead.

Here's what the top of the leaderboard looks like, via

1. Jon Rahm (-12)

2. Ryan Palmer (-8)

2. Tony Finau (-8)

4. Danny Willett (-6)

T5. Henrik Norlander (-5)

T5. Jason Day (-5)

T7. Matt Wallace (-4)

T7. Chez Reavie (-4)

T9. Patrick Rodgers (-3)

T9. Patrick Cantlay (-3)

T9. Mackenzie Hughes (-3)

Rahm has put himself in position to win by being steady throughout the first three rounds. He had just three bogeys through the first 36 holes entering Saturday. The 25-year-old got off to a modest start in the third round with an even-par 36 through nine holes.

Once Rahm got to the 13th hole, he kicked things into high gear with four consecutive birdies to create some separation between himself and the other contenders.

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In addition to potentially securing his first win of the season Sunday, Rahm has a chance to become the No. 1 player in the Official World Golf Ranking barring a miraculous performance by Rory McIlroy in the final round:

When Rahm was going on his run of birdies, Palmer and Finau were struggling to keep pace. Palmer and Finau started the day tied for the lead but responded by having their worst round of the tournament with matching scores of 73.

Finau was moving along quite well on the front nine, making the turn at one under par thanks to a birdie on No. 4. His three birdies on the back nine were nullified by two double bogeys and a bogey.

Palmer didn't have as many issues as Finau down the stretch, but bogeys on two of his final three holes left him with a lot more work to do Sunday if he hopes to catch Rahm.

There was a moment on No. 13 when it looked like Palmer was going to keep pace with Rahm thanks to this approach from the rough:

Saturday was a rough day for most of the field, as Rahm and Brendon Todd were the only players to break 70 and a total of 20 players finished under par.

One of the players who managed to break par was Tiger Woods. The five-time Memorial champion rebounded from a 75 on Friday with a 71 in the third round.

McIlroy posted his second consecutive round of 72 and is tied for 12th at two under par for the tournament.

Rahm is looking at his first top-10 finish since the WGC-Mexico Championship in February. The Arizona State alum hasn't won on the PGA Tour since the Hero World Challenge in November 2018. He will look to end that drought Sunday.