Rodgers maintains 2-stroke lead at John Deere Classic

Elias Hubbard
July 17, 2017

This year's John Deere Classic was a thriller, and it was especially thrilling for the victor, the 23 year-old Bryson DeChambeau.

The 23-year-old DeChambeau birdied four of the final six holes at TPC Deere Run for a 6-under 65 and an 18-under 266 total.

Rodgers closed with 70.

It's his fifth top 25 of the season in 22 starts and second top 10, joining solo 8th at the Farmers 25 weeks ago.

Bryson DeChambeau and Patrick Rodgers were two of the top amateur players in recent memory, both of whom brought lofty expectations to the PGA Tour.

John Deere specialist Zach Johnson, who fired a 67, and first-round co-leader Charles Howell III (69) were tied in third place on 10-under at the halfway point of the tournament.

Another player dominating the back nine was DeChambeau, who put up back-to-back birdies three different times in that nine-hole stretch, on Nos.

Rodgers, on the other hand, had four bogeys - and his approach on No. 18 sailed past the green.

On Friday, though, he caught fire after a slow start, nailing a 50-foot chip-in for birdie at his 12th and a 50-foot birdie putt four holes later. Lamb was 13 under for the final two rounds but was done in by pedestrian efforts in the first two rounds. Rodgers then had a par putt on No. 17 lip out, and sent his tee shot on 18 into the rough.

The uncharateristic slip up from the German saw him pipped for the title at Caves Valley Golf Club in Baltimore by American Scott McCarron.

The story of the day, however, was the stunning collapse by Langer. His Open Championship debut will have to wait.

"Payne has definitely meant a lot to me in my life", DeChambeau said, "and hopefully I can kind of follow in his footsteps". "That was one of my goals this year, to win three events and one of them being a major". "I thought I was going to be in a playoff".

Rodgers, meanwhile, had found trouble off the tee on the 17th and failed to recover as he dropped a shot.

No. 2 was birdie central on Sunday, with 40 of the 73 golfers on the course shooting under par there in the final round, but it was the back nine that offered one chance after another for a low score.

Playing in the twosome ahead of Langer and Jobe, McCarron didn't need to see the leaderboard to realize what happened.

DeChambeau sank the birdie putt, let out a huge roar and fist pump as he reached 18 under.

"It's pretty special to have my first win be here", DeChambeau said.

"This is going to hurt for a little while because it was within my grasp to win the championship", Langer said.

"All I had to do was come home in even par more or less".

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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