Garrick Posts 63, Leads By Two At F55F Championship

London, ON, Canada— With 19 birdies through three days of competition, Jonathan Garrick managed to pull ahead of second-round co-leader Corey Pereira during the third round of the Freedom 55 Financial Championship, firing a 63 to take a two-stroke lead into the final round.

Through the front nine, Garrick and Pereira engaged in a back-and-fourth battle of epic proportions, exchanging 10 birdies between the two of them.

It wasn’t until a two-stroke swing on the long par-4 14th hole, where Pereira made bogey, that Garrick took a stranglehold of the lead.

Jonathan Garrick

“It was fun. I don’t want to say I was rooting for or against him, but it was fun to see him make birdies because I knew the more he made, the more I wasn’t going to let up either,” said Garrick. “He (Pereira) made a few long putts there and we kept going back and fourth.”

Hole Nos. 14-16 have played the toughest at Highland Country Club this week, ranking first, third and second hardest respectively. Despite the challenge, Garrick played the toughest stretch on the course 2-under par on Saturday.

“I wasn’t even trying to really birdie them,” said the 24-year-old. “I made a long putt on 14, hit a good iron shot on 15 and made about a 15 or 20-foot putt on 16, and it was one of the easiest putts you can get on that green, so I did a good job to get it there.”

Before the week, Garrick, who is playing his third-consecutive year on the Mackenzie Tour, had yet to head into the final round of an event with the lead, but says he is confident that he will be prepared for tomorrow.

“I’ve never done it before, but I felt comfortable today,” said the UCLA alum. “I was just playing golf, I wasn’t too nervous, I was just calm and able to keep making birdies which was good. Tomorrow is the same thing.”

Trailing Garrick by two is Carter Jenkins, who has a lot to play for, currently projected to move into the top-25 on the money list with the second spot on the leaderboard. Meanwhile, with a win, Garrick would move into the top-10 on the Order of Merit, a spot that would send him to the final round of Web.com Tour Q-School.

On the Canadian side of things, for the second time this tournament, Michael Gligic managed to avoid bogeys on his card, making six birdies to sign for a 64, matching his score from day one.

The round puts him one-stroke ahead of Jared du Toit, and, already leading the Freedom 55 Financial Canadian Player of the Year Race, puts him in prime position to earn his third consecutive Canadian Player of the Week award, and fourth of the season.

Key Information
•The top-five players on the Order of Merit following the event will secure Web.com Tour status, with the top player fully exempt through the 2019 season. Players who finish between 6-10 on the year-long race will receive an exemption into the final stage of Web.com Tour Q-School and players 11-25 will receive an exemption into the second stage of the event.
•The movement around spot No. 10 on the Order of Merit will be one to watch tomorrow, as player such as Jordan Niebrugge (currently No. 12) and Chris Williams (Currently No. 11), will look for stellar days to move into the position while Cody Blick (currently No. 10) and Mark Anguiano (currently No. 9) look to retain their positions.
•Six players are within roughly $4,000 of spot No. 25 on the Order of Merit with 18 holes remaining in the 2018 season.
•Corey Pereira made five birdies on the front nine to make the turn in the lead, but the California native wasn’t able to take the momentum into the back nine, making bogey on the 14th, and then double on the 18th after a drive that sailed right and out of bounds. Pereira signed for a 68 and heads into the final round tied for fifth.
•Getting into the event by a mere $500 on the money list, Grant Hirschman played his best round of the season on Saturday, making seven birdies offset by a lone bogey to shoot 63 and catapult himself up the leaderboard. At No. 59 on the Order of Merit, the recent Oklahoma University alum looks to move into the top-25 with a good finish on Sunday.
•Jared du Toit found his opening-round form on Saturday, playing his second bogey-free round of the week to sign for a 64 to move him to 12-under. Last year at the event, Du Toit finished T17 at 10-under.
•Carter Jenkins, coming into the week at No. 36 on the Order of Merit, backed up a stellar Friday 64 with a 62 on Saturday to move into second place heading into Sunday. The score is Jenkins lowest as a professional.
•With an eagle to start the day and an eagle to finish, Lorens Chan heads into Sunday at 12-under after jarring his shot on the 18th to put him in a tie for sixth.
•With five birdies and just a single bogey, Danny Walker heads into the final round tied for third place alongside Gligic, looking to move inside the top-25 with a second place or better finish on Sunday.

Quotable

“It’s funny, it doesn’t feel like, good or bad, it’s just kind of the way I’m playing. I’m just going about my business and making a lot of birdies, and it’s just been fun. There’s already a 61, and I shot 63 twice, so somebody could definitely shoot a 61 or 62, so I know I need to go post a low one tomorrow.”

– Jonathan Garrick

“What a funny way to do it. I’ve never shot 62 in a tournament, I’ve shot 63 a few times, but never 62, and do to do it on a chip-in is pretty cool.”

– Carter Jenkins On his chip-in birdie on 18

“My girlfriend wasn’t going to come up because she’s in med school at East Carolina, but the hurricane brought her up. They had their first exam Monday and then classes were cancelled, so Thursday she flew up here and I’ve been 14-under the two days since she got here.”

– Carter Jenkins

“It was a great start, being three back and you just want a good round to stay right there, and then to start eagle-birdie-birdie-par-birdie​, you can’t ask for better than that. I missed a short par putt on the sixth hole, but it was a really good day, and I’m not going to complain about a 62.”

– Carter Jenkins

“My game plan coming in, I’ve been playing well all year, I just hadn’t been scoring as well as I deserved in my mind, so I came in expecting to win, and thought ‘don’t be surprised when you’re there.’”

– Carter Jenkins

“I got off to a good start today, which I hadn’t done any of the days. I just kept it clean when I was out of position. I gave myself a lot of really good looks all day and I was able to capitalize on a few.”

– Jared du Toit

“I didn’t really make anything. Day one I made some putts I shouldn’t have, and today I felt like I was just really solid on the mid-range putts and honestly just made putts I should make. It was a clean ball-striking day today.”

– Jared du Toit

“I’m really excited for tomorrow. I should be last two, three or four groups so right in the mix tomorrow. I have a lot to play for this year still, so really looking forward to it.”

– Jared du Toit

“Yesterday, I started out really well and turned in 4-under and then just had a bad back nine, so I knew a low number was out there today, so I stayed patient. I just have to go at everything, I have nothing to lose so I’m just having fun and go after it.”

– Grant Hirschman

“The first couple holes, with the two par fives… Carter was 4-under through 3 to start… it shows you how low you can go. I finally got hole one today, I hadn’t made a birdie there yet this week, so that was a nice start. Just kind of kept it rolling.

– Michael Gligic

“I’ve been hitting it good for a while and the putter has been good for the second half of the season, so I’ve got one more day in me and we’ll see what happens.”

– Michael Gligic

Third-Round Weather: Sunny, 27 degrees Celsius, 10 KM/h wind

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