PGA Tour

Harding, Grace roar into the mix at Zurich Classic

Justin Harding (Getty Images)
Justin Harding (Getty Images)

New Orleans - Spain's Jon Rahm sank a 15-foot birdie putt on the 18th hole to give himself and American partner Ryan Palmer a share of the lead after Saturday's third round of the PGA Tour's Zurich Classic.

Rahm and Palmer fired an eight-under par 64 to match Scott Stallings and Trey Mullinax atop the leaderboard on 23-under par 193 after 54 holes at the TPC of Louisiana course near New Orleans.

The unique pairs event features fourball (best ball) first and third rounds and foursomes (alternate shot) in the second and final rounds.

Rahm and Palmer and the US duo, who combined for a 10-under 62, stood one stroke ahead of South Africans Justin Harding and Branden Grace, who fired 61 on Saturday.

American Brian Gay and Slovakia's Rory Sabbatini shared fourth on 196 with Americans Peter Malnati and Billy Hurley.

Rahm sank a five-foot birdie putt at the first hole and Palmer dropped in a 15-footer to birdie the par-5 second and each birdied the sixth as well.

Rahm tapped-in for birdie at seven, sank an 11-footer to birdie the ninth, tapped in to birdie the 11th and sank a three-footer for birdie at 13.

After they grabbed a share of the lead when Rahm sank a six-footer for birdie at 16, both Palmer and Rahm found water off the 17th tee and Palmer salvaged a bogey to keep them one adrift heading to the 18th hole, setting up Rahm's closing heroics to level them for the lead.

Mullinax dropped his approach to five feet at the opening hole and sank the birdie putt, then drove the second green in two and made a 16-foot eagle putt.

After a bogey at three, Stallings added some long-putt heroics with a 35-footer for birdie at the fourth and a 19-footer for birdie at the fifth.

Mullinax sank 14-foot birdie putts at the par-5 seventh and par-4 eighth and began the back nine with a 17-foot birdie effort.

Stallings added a 12-foot birdie putt at the par-5 11th and Mullinax sank a 10-footer for birdie at 16.

Leading scores after Saturday's third round of the PGA Tour Zurich Classic pairs event, with fourball (best-ball) first and third rounds and foursomes (alternate shot) second and final rounds (par-72 USA unless noted):

193 - Scott Stallings/Trey Mullinax 61-70-62, Jon Rahm/Ryan Palmer (ESP/USA) 64-65-64

194 - Branden Grace/Justin Harding (RSA) 65-68-61

196 - Brian Gay/Rory Sabbatini (USA/SVK) 60-70-66, Peter Malnati/Billy Hurley 63-67-66

197 - Joel Dahmen/Brandon Harkins 63-71-63, Austin Cook/Andrew Landry 65-70-62, Hank Lebioda/Curtis Luck (USA/AUS) 67-66-64, Sergio Garcia/Tommy Fleetwood (ESP/ENG) 65-68-64, Russell Henley/Ryan Blaum 65-67-65, Russell Knox/Brian Stuard (SCO/USA)

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