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AT&T National: Rickie Fowler And Nick Watney Share The Lead As 3rd Round Ends

Rickie Fowler shot a fantastic front nine and Nick Watney set a course record as the two finished third round play at Aronimink tied atop the leaderboard in the 2011 AT&T National.

Fowler birdied six of his first ten holes and finished with a six under 64 top put him at nine under for the tournament. Watney, meanwhile, had the low score of the day and in fact, the lowest score ever at Aronimink with a course record 62. He’s tied with Fowler at -9 for the tourney.

Watney’s day included eight birdies, an eagle and two bogeys with his strongest play coming on the back nine. He explained the day.

“Yeah, I started off very nice. I hit it probably three feet on the first hole and six feet on the second hole, and then a string of pars. Bogeyed 8, hit a very poor iron. 9, I hit two shots about ten yards short of the green and made a huge mess of that so just a pretty disappointing way to end the front nine. And then for some reason the ball just — the hole looked really big on the back. The ball was going where I was looking, and by the time I looked up, I was 8-under par. "

Steve Marino, who is two shots back in third, also set a course record this afternoon with a 63, but it stood for literally only five minutes as Watney broke finished with the a 62 immediately after.

“It was nice while it lasted,” Marino said. Like everyone, he was surprised at how the scores dropped so dramatically this afternoon.

“You know, it’s kind of weird; usually not on a Saturday at an event like this and a course like this. Usually it gets tougher as the week goes on. But it’s kind of been opposite this week. I thought the hardest day was Thursday.”

Also tied at -7 in third place are Adam Scott and Webb Simpson. Six golfers are tied at six under, so with the soft greens and low scores we saw today, the tournament is really wide open heading into the final round tomorrow.