CROMWELL (Connecticut) – Jordan Spieth finished on top of the leaderboard for the third consecutive day at the Travelers Championship.
Spieth remained in the lead when he made a 20-foot birdie putt on the final hole for a 4-under-par-66 at TPC River Highlands in Cromwell, Conn.
The 23-year-old Spieth completed 54 holes at 12-under 198. Boo Weekley is right behind Spieth at 11-under 199 after a 65 in the third round.
Three shots behind Spieth in third place is Daniel Berger at 9 under after a 66. Another stroke behind Berger are C.T. Pan of Taiwan, David Lingmerth of Sweden and Paul Casey of England.
Lingmerth produced a 65 and Pan and Casey both shot 66 in the third round.
Spieth has finished each round with a one-shot lead in a tournament he’s playing for the first time. His one hiccup on Saturday was consecutive bogeys at Nos. 13 and 14.
Charley Hoffman briefly went moved on top, but Spieth then salvaged the round and regained the lead with birdies on three of his final four holes.
“Yeah, I saw the boards. I was aware,” Spieth said of losing the lead for a short time. “I probably won’t watch tomorrow, but, man, we had nothing else to do. That was a 5 1/2-, six-hour round today. We were standing around so long, you can’t help but look around. But it was (that way) for everybody.”
Spieth hopes to carry the momentum from his strong finish into the final round on Sunday.
“I’m going to go out there and play solid golf,” Spieth said. “That’s what we’ve been doing. That’s cliche, but a couple (birdies) a side on a round like today, I thought at the beginning of the week if you shot 4 under each day, you’d be right there. So I think that’s the goal.”
The 43-year-old Weekley also closed the round with a flourish, making birdies at five of the last eight holes, including the final two.
It has been awhile since Weekley was in contention. His best finish this year is a tie for 37th at the Puerto Rico Open. He hasn’t won since the 2013 Crowne Plaza Invitational at Colonial.
“I mean, I’ve been having some personal struggles back home and then finally I’m starting to get that little bit taken care of,” he said. “It’s just kind of surreal to be back up here in front of y’all and talking about it. As much work as I’ve put into golf and as much as I’d love to win again and be a part of it, don’t matter which tournament, I just want to win.
“That’s what everybody out here, that’s what we strive to do. To be sitting here feels like it’s an honor, at the same time as I’m playing well.”
Hoffman eagled the par-3 13th hole and followed with two birdies, but then his round fell apart with a double bogey at the par-3 16th hole and bogeys at Nos. 17 and 18. He slipped back into a tie for 10th, six behind Spieth, after a 68.
Rory McIlroy, who barely made the cut on Friday, carved out a round of 70 on Saturday and is well off the pace at par for the tournament with a 210 total