China’s Carl Yuan enjoyed a strong finish for a 6-under 66 in the third round of Korn Ferry Tour Championship presented by United Leasing & Finance to stay in the fight of finishing as No. 1 in the season-long points race.
The 25-year-old Yuan, who has already secured his PGA TOUR card for the new season, hit eight birdies on the card including three over his closing four holes at Victoria National Golf Club in Newburgh, Indiana to move up to joint sixth and three back of new tournament leader, Justin Suh of the U.S.
Suh, a former world amateur No. 1, hit a superb 64 to hold a one-shot lead on 17-under over Tano Goya of Argentina and is projected to become the new Korn Ferry Tour No. 1 if Yuan cannot finish in a three-way tie for second or better, and current points leader Paul Haley II is unable to finish in solo third or higher. Haley II carded a 71 for T58.
Finishing as No. 1 secures fully exempt status on the PGA TOUR in the new season and also entry into THE PLAYERS Championship and U.S. Open.
Korea’s Seonghyeon Kim returned a 65 to share sixth place on 14-under while Thailand’s Kiradech Aphibarnrat, who started the day in tied second place, endured a nightmarish 81 to fall all the way down to tied 65th place.
With just 18 holes remaining in the 2022 Korn Ferry Tour season, the 25-year-old Suh took his first career lead and stood alone atop the leaderboard a bogey-free 8-under, the second-lowest score at Victoria National.
Suh birdied four of his first five holes (Nos. 1, 2, 4, and 5), followed by four more at Nos. 9, 12, 15, and 16. The San Jose, California native’s 17-under 199 marks the lowest 54-hole score in a Korn Ferry Tour event at Victoria National, breaking the previous record of 16-under 200 established by Tom Lewis and Greyson Sigg in 2019 and 2020, respectively.
“It was a hot start,” said Suh, who has already locked his PGA TOUR card and entered the week ranked No. 8. “I wasn’t making very long putts. It was just kind of 8-footers, 10-footers. We were hitting our numbers. It was, like I said, it was a very simple round, nothing got out of hand; we were always in position. I know I need a win to lock it up.”
Final-round tee times will run from 7:30 a.m. through 9:30 a.m. local time off the first and 10th tees.
- With a win, the only potential outcomes which involve Justin Suh (1st / -17) not finishing No. 1 in the season-long points race would be Paul Haley II (T58 / -4) finishing solo-third or higher, or Carl Yuan (T6 / -14) finishing in a three-way T2 or higher
- Players currently projected to move inside The Finals 25 are: Tano Goya (2nd / -16), Austin Eckroat (T3 / -15), Sam Stevens (T6 / -14), Eric Cole (T6 / -14), Brent Grant (T12 / -12), Ryan Armour (T21 / -10), and John Augenstein (T12 / -12)
- Suh’s 17-under 199 marks his lowest 54-hole score in his Korn Ferry Tour career
- Sam Stevens (T6 / -14) tied the course record with a 10-under 62 and projects to finish inside The Finals 25 for his first PGA TOUR card
- In his 25th start on the Korn Ferry Tour, Tano Goya (2nd / -16) holds his highest position after 18, 36 or 54-holes; he is bidding for his first PGA TOUR card this week
- Nicholas Lindheim (T3 / -7) sits inside the top 10 through 54 holes of a Korn Ferry Tour event for the first time since September 2020 (T7 at the 2020 Memorial Health Championship presented by LRS, finished T13)
- Four players inside the top 10 through 54 holes have already secured their PGA TOUR card via the Korn Ferry Tour Regular Season Standings: Suh, Seonghyeon Kim (T6 / -14), Carl Yuan (T6 / -14) and Michael Kim (T10 / -13)
- The Korn Ferry Tour Championship presented by United Leasing & Finance is the third and final tournament of the three-event Korn Ferry Tour Finals, in addition to being the 26th and final event of the 2022 Korn Ferry Tour season
- The Finals 25 will be determined following the conclusion of Sunday’s final round, with PGA TOUR cards being awarded to each member of The Finals 25
- This week’s purse is $1,000,000, with $180,000 going to the champion; the champion will also receive 1,000 Korn Ferry Tour points
- Next season’s Korn Ferry Tour Finals events will feature minimum purses of $1,500,000
Third-Round Course Statistics
- Scoring Average (Total – Par 72): 69.895 [-2.105]
- Scoring Average (Front Nine): 34.526 [-1.474]
- Scoring Average (Back Nine): 35.368 [-0.632]
- Toughest Holes: No. 17, Par 4, 454 yards – 4.250 [+0.250]
- Easiest Hole: No. 9, Par 5, 548 yards – 4.408 [-0.592]