Five birdies in a row see Jim Knous share Calofirnia lead

American joins Maverick McNealy as Knox falls off the pace in Fortinet Championship

Jim Knous shot a third round of 65 in California. Photograph: Meg Oliphant/Getty

Jim Knous shot a third round of 65 in California. Photograph: Meg Oliphant/Getty

 

Jim Knous shot five straight birdies in a superb seven-under 65 to take a share of the lead with Maverick McNealy in the third round of the Fortinet Championship in California.

Knous charged up the leaderboard in a spectacular front nine of six-under par 30, making a two at the par three second before birdying holes five through nine.

After his only blemish of the day with a bogey five on the 12th, the 31-year-old birdied the 16th and 18th to end Saturday at 14-under par.

He was level with fellow American McNealy, who could not repeat his strong 64 from Friday but did birdie his last three holes to end with a two-under 70.

A group of five players shared third place at 12-under, Chile’s Mito Pereira along with Americans Scott Stallings, Max Homa, Troy Merritt and Beau Hossler, while Phil Mickelson was two shots further back after a 67.

Scotland’s Russell Knox, four strokes off the pace after two rounds, collapsed with a three-over 75 to be nine shots behind the leaders, while the only other Briton to make the cut — England’s David Skinns — shot a 74 to be one-under.

Collated third round scores & totals in the USPGA Tour Fortinet Championship (USA unless stated, Par 72):

202 Jim Knous 70 67 65, Maverick McNealy 68 64 70

204 Max Homa 67 72 65, Beau Hossler 70 64 70, Troy Merritt 67 68 69, Guillermo Mito Pereira (Chi) 67 67 70, Scott Stallings 67 70 67

205 Talor Gooch 69 70 66

206 Tom Hoge 71 66 69, Si Woo Kim (Kor) 68 70 68, Patton Kizzire 69 70 67, Phil Mickelson 70 69 67, Chengtsung Pan (Tai) 71 68 67, Scott Piercy 69 69 68, Webb Simpson 70 71 65, Dawie van der Walt (Rsa) 68 70 68, Harold Varner III 68 68 70, Will Zalatoris 68 67 71

207 John Augenstein 68 69 70, Aaron Baddeley (Aus) 71 68 68, Austin Cook 68 71 68, Charley Hoffman 69 71 67, Nate Lashley 67 70 70, David Lipsky 73 64 70, Andrew Putnam 72 69 66

208 Bronson Burgoon 68 67 73, Matt Kuchar 70 66 72, Marc Leishman (Aus) 69 71 68, Patrick Rodgers 68 70 70, Sahith Theegala 69 70 69, Kevin Tway 70 69 69

209 Wyndham Clark 68 71 70, Jason Dufner 67 72 70, Nick Hardy 69 72 68, Mark Hubbard 70 68 71, Hideki Matsuyama (Jpn) 69 69 71, Cameron Tringale 66 72 71, Justin Suh 70 71 68

210 Peter Malnati 71 66 73, Taylor Pendrith (Can) 71 68 71, Chez Reavie 65 75 70, Nick Watney 71 70 69, Dylan Wu 70 70 70

211 Joseph Bramlett 70 70 71, Jim Herman 70 71 70, Sung-Hoon Kang (Kor) 70 71 70, Russell Knox (Sco) 69 67 75, Greyson Sigg 68 72 71, Adam Svensson (Can) 70 70 71, Brendon Todd 71 70 70

212 Ryan Armour 72 68 72, Paul Barjon (Fra) 70 71 71, Lanto Griffin 73 68 71, Sean O’Hair 69 72 71, Cameron Percy (Aus) 71 69 72, Austin Smotherman 70 69 73

213 Scott Gutschewski 69 70 74, Luke List 71 70 72, Adam Schenk 68 73 72, Brendan Steele 70 71 72, Michael Thompson 72 69 72

214 Quade Cummins 72 69 73

215 Michael Gligic (Can) 71 70 74, Matthew NeSmith 73 68 74, David Skinns (Eng) 70 71 74, Nick Taylor (Can) 70 71 74

216 Chase Seiffert 73 67 76, Vaughn Taylor 70 71 75, Peter Uihlein 68 73 75

218 Sam Ryder 69 71 78

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