After three rounds in the U.S. Open Championship at Torrey Pines (South Course), near San Diego in California, three PGA Tour pros are tied for first place at 5-under par 208: South African Louis Oosterhuizen, American Russell Henley, and Canadian Mackenzie Hughes. Lurking two strokes behind them at 3-under par 210 are long-ball hitter American Bryson De Chambeau, the defending champion, and Ireland’s four-time major winner Rory McIlroy. The U.S. Open is one of golf’s four major tournaments, the others being the Masters, PGA Championship, and British Open.
Oosterhuizen won this tournament in 2010 for his only major win. He is so often in contention in these major golf championships on the last round. In fact, he has finished second five times in them. It’s because he has one of the best golf swings in pro golf, if not the best. Easy-going Louis Oosterhuizen has always been one of my favorited Tour players. He gained the tie for first today by making an eagle three on the par five 18th hole. But it maybe could have been a disastrous and embarrassing bogey six or more.
Oosterhuizen hit a great fairway metalwood second shot over the water to the green on the 18th hole today. It looked like it came close to hitting the pin that was tucked in a dangerous place, on the front-left side of the green near the pond that fronts the green. His ball stopped on the back portion of the green, perhaps 40-50 feet from the hole. That is a tricky downhill putt that I’ve had many times when I used to play in the San Diego Open at Torrey Pines was back in the day. Louis hit that putt and it went right in the middle of the hole. However, if the ball would have missed the hole, it had enough speed on it that it might have gone right off the green and into the water. Louis even mentioned that in his televised interview after the round.
Tomorrow should be an exciting U.S. Open last round as there are other former major winners closed behind as well that have a chance to win this biggest of golf titles in the USA in a majestic view in which Torrey Pines sits perched on a cliff overlooking the Pacific Ocean, with hang gliders often soaring through the air nearby. It is premiere place for hang gliders since a light breeze usually ascends of the sea and up the cliffs. One almost hit me one time when I was standing beside the seventh green. You can’t hear them coming.