Merritt, Niemann Share 54 Hole Lead at Rocket Mortgage Classic

Joaquin Niemann
Joaquin Niemann hits a tee shot on the 3rd hole on July 3, 2021 during the Rocket Mortgage Classic at the Detroit GC in Detroit, MI. (Photo by Brian Spurlock Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)

Joaquin Niemann and Troy Merritt will enter the final round of the 2021 Rocket Mortgage Classic with a share of the lead on 14-under par.

Niemann, who was the overnight co-leader, produced his third consecutive bogey free round, highlighted by four birdies, to post 68 and reach the top of the mount on 14-under par.

“Yeah, going to keep playing my game. Obviously the leaders, they’re all pretty close, right next to each other, so I know that I need to go low tomorrow to give myself a chance to win,” said Niemann.

“Yeah, just going to try to keep playing my game, give myself chances and try to make them. Yeah, it’s going to be fun.”

He added, “I think it’s just you hit a lot of drivers here and if you hit the driver well, you’re hitting a lot of wedges. I’ve been hitting the wedges pretty good this week, so I think, yeah, I think my whole game’s been there and hopefully will stay there for tomorrow.”

Merritt, meanwhile, offset a single bogey with four birdies and an ace on the par-3 11th hole to post 67 and join Niemann atop the leaderboard after three rounds.

Troy Merritt
Troy Merritt reacts with his caddie Wayne Birch to a hole in one on the 11th green during the third round of the Rocket Mortgage Classic on July 03, 2021 at the Detroit GC in Detroit, MI. (Photo by Gregory Shamus via Getty Images)

“Yeah, first and foremost, it’s awesome to have the fans back out here whooping and hollering the good shots, commiserating with the bad shots and even hearing some of the comments you probably don’t want to hear,” said Merritt.

“No, it was fantastic obviously. To give them something to yell about, give Wayne something to yell about up on the tee box was pretty special.”

Tomorrow’s top chasers will be Cam Davis (67) and Hank Lebioda (66), who were T3 on 13-under par, one clear of Brandon Hagy (68), and two ahead of six players at 11 under, headlined by Jason Kokrak (67), Chris Kirk (68) and Kevin Kisner (69).

Rickie Fowler posted a 68 and was among 10 players tied for 15th on 9 under, one ahead of Bubba Watson who was 8 under.


2021 Rocket Mortgage Classic


Top-10 Leaders: Round 3

Pos-Player-To Par-(Rd 3)
1. Joaquin Niemann -14 (-4)
1. Troy Merritt -14 (-5)
3. Cam Davis -13 (-5)
3. Hank Lebioda -13 (-6)
5. Brandon Hagy -12 (-4)
6. Jason Kokrak -11 (-5)
6. Chris Kirk -11 (-2)
6. Kevin Kisner -11 (-3)
6. Tom Lewis -11 (-1)
6. Pat Perez -11 (-3)
6. Richy Werenski -11 (-3)

Notables

Pos-Player-To Par-(Rd 3)
15. Rickie Fowler -9 (-4)
25. Bubba Watson -8 (-5)
35. Jason Day -7 (-3)
58. Patrick Reed -5 (-2)
63. Will Zalatoris -4 (+2)
70. Phil Mickelson -3 (E)


Material from PGA Tour Media & Communications was used to compile report.


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