Rickie Fowler rebounds to victory, rain doesn’t slow Phoenix Open final round

SCOTTSDALE — Despite heavy rain late Saturday night and early Sunday, the Waste Management Phoenix Open’s final round is underway.

Rickie Fowler celebrates winning the 2019 Waste Management Phoenix Open. (Photo by John Mendoza/Cronkite News)
Justin Thomas taps the memorial for the late Jarrod Lyle as he enters the stadium at the 16th hole. (Photo by John Mendoza/Cronkite News)
Emiliano Grillo celebrates his birdie on the 16th hole. Grillo’s tee shot stopped just 1 foot and 3 inches away from the hole. (Photo by John Mendoza/Cronkite News)
Rickie Fowler signs flags for members of the U.S. Army after finishing his round. (Photo by John Mendoza/Cronkite News)
Matt Kuchar shot a 65 to get to 16-under for the weekend but he lost a stroke on Rickie Fowler and is 4 back going into Sunday. (Photo by John Mendoza/Cronkite News)
Phil Mickelson was able to birdie 18, but his round included five bogeys. (Photo by John Mendoza/Cronkite News)
The Waste Management Phoenix Open is known for all kinds of colorful fans, including this group at the notorious 16th hole. (Photo by John Mendoza/Cronkite News)
Bubba Watson came ready to play on Friday. The left-hander saw his tournament score go to 9-under, good for two back of the lead after the morning groups. (Photo by John Mendoza/Cronkite News)
Friday at the Waste Management Phoenix Open typically has the second-largest crowds of the weekend, although this year the Thunderbirds announced they will not release attendance numbers. (Photo by John Mendoza/Cronkite News)
Overnight co-leader Justin Thomas got out to a fast start of Friday with a birdie on the first hole. (Photo by John Mendoza/Cronkite News)
FedExCup leader Zander Shauffele struggled on Friday, posting a 1-over 72 and landing in the bunker four times during his round. (Photo by John Mendoza/Cronkite News)
Overnight co-leader Rickie Fowler got off to a fast start Friday with this birdie on the 2nd hole. (Photo by John Mendoza/Cronkite News)

The final pairing of Rickie Fowler, Matt Kuchar and Justin Thomas teed off on time at 10:45 a.m. Spirited fans already filled the seats at the 16th hole.

Saturday’s competition was highlighted by the performance of Fowler, who hit 11 of 14 fairways and shot a third-round 64 to take a four-stroke lead over Matt Kuchar.

“We got 18 holes left, a lot of work, but we’re in a good spot,” Fowler said.

Meanwhile, many players took a moment at 16 to touch a memorial for late PGA Tour pro Jarrod Lyle, who passed away six months ago after a battle with cancer. The memorial was the club he used to hit a hole-in-one at 16 in 2011, which was leaning against his golf bag with his hat on it.

“His wife and I stay in touch and we’re going to work on some stuff moving forward of what we can do and ultimately keeping Jarrod’s name alive,” Fowler said. “Special guy and it’s awesome to see the Thunderbirds and Waste Management go ahead and do that on 16 tee.”

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