Stephan Jaeger held on to a one-shot lead heading into the final day at the Farmers Insurance Open in spite of recording six birdies and five birdies on Friday for a 73.
The German player holds the 54-hole lead/co-lead for the first time in his 129th career start on Tour but has finished in the top-10 four times. This marks the first time in tournament history that a 54-hole leader/co-leader posts over-par in the third round.
"I've played Torrey Pines enough now that I know you don't go out and shoot 4, 5 under every day you play the South Course. I just knew that I was playing good enough, my game was good enough that if I just mentally stayed sharp and stayed, you know, on course of what I wanted to do, I had a good chance of having a chance on Sunday. That's all I really want. You want to come down the back nine, you want to have a chance to win. So I've done that. I'm really excited about tomorrow. Today was a blast, I loved it, so I'm excited."
With a win, Jaeger would become the first German player to win on Tour since Alex Cejka at the 2015 Puerto Rico Open.
French rookie Matthieu Pavon posted an even-par 72 to move into a share of second place at 10-under alongside Dane Nicolai Højgaard who shot a 73.
Thomas Detry of Belgium was leading when he took a penalty and closed with a double bogey for a 73 and the solo fourth place at 9-under.
“I hit an amazing drive. I drove it great on 18,” he said. “I was just in between 3-wood, hybrid. It’s been a very long day. I think we played in 5 hours 45 (minutes). I had a little bit of mud on the ball. The lie wasn’t perfect, the light was starting to be — it was starting to be dark.
“There was a couple of different factors that were not in my favor,” he said. “Obviously short is a no-go. So we decided to be smart and there we go, I got punched in the face.”
Jaeger and Detry enter the final round in contention on the Aon Swing 5 standings for the AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am. If they do not qualify via the Aon Swing 5, they can then become eligible by virtue of their position on the 2022-23 FedExCup Fall standings. The AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am will select those players, not otherwise eligible, from No. 61 and beyond on the 2022-23 FedExCup Fall standings to fill the field to 80 players. Jaeger and Detry finished at No. 61 and No. 63, respectively. Currently, Keith Mitchell (No. 69) is the 80th player in the field.
Aon Swing 5 standings
The Farmers Insurance Open, the fourth event of the 2024 PGA TOUR Season and third Full-Field Event, marks the third and final opportunity for players to earn FedExCup points towards the Aon Swing 5. The top five players not otherwise exempt who earn the most FedExCup points during the Sony Open in Hawaii, The American Express and Farmers Insurance Open will qualify for next week’s AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am.