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Rough return to 'normal' sends Scheffler down the leaderboard at PGA Championship

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Rough return to 'normal' sends Scheffler down the leaderboard at PGA Championship
Sport

Sport

Rough return to 'normal' sends Scheffler down the leaderboard at PGA Championship

2024-05-19 07:36 Last Updated At:07:41

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (AP) — Scottie Scheffler arrived at the golf course Saturday in plenty of time. Once he got there, nothing felt quite right.

A day after he powered through his odyssey to the jailhouse, then back to the course just in time to get to the opening tee box, Scheffler enjoyed a more regular schedule but struggled to keep things together at the PGA Championship.

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Scottie Scheffler hits from the bunker on the 10th hole during the third round of the PGA Championship golf tournament at the Valhalla Golf Club, Saturday, May 18, 2024, in Louisville, Ky. (AP Photo/Sue Ogrocki)

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (AP) — Scottie Scheffler arrived at the golf course Saturday in plenty of time. Once he got there, nothing felt quite right.

Scottie Scheffler reacts to his chip to the green on the fourth hole during the third round of the PGA Championship golf tournament at the Valhalla Golf Club, Saturday, May 18, 2024, in Louisville, Ky. (AP Photo/Jeff Roberson)

Scottie Scheffler reacts to his chip to the green on the fourth hole during the third round of the PGA Championship golf tournament at the Valhalla Golf Club, Saturday, May 18, 2024, in Louisville, Ky. (AP Photo/Jeff Roberson)

Scottie Scheffler chips to the green on the fourth hole during the third round of the PGA Championship golf tournament at the Valhalla Golf Club, Saturday, May 18, 2024, in Louisville, Ky. (AP Photo/Jeff Roberson)

Scottie Scheffler chips to the green on the fourth hole during the third round of the PGA Championship golf tournament at the Valhalla Golf Club, Saturday, May 18, 2024, in Louisville, Ky. (AP Photo/Jeff Roberson)

Scottie Scheffler hits from the bunker on the seventh hole during the third round of the PGA Championship golf tournament at the Valhalla Golf Club, Saturday, May 18, 2024, in Louisville, Ky. (AP Photo/Jeff Roberson)

Scottie Scheffler hits from the bunker on the seventh hole during the third round of the PGA Championship golf tournament at the Valhalla Golf Club, Saturday, May 18, 2024, in Louisville, Ky. (AP Photo/Jeff Roberson)

Scottie Scheffler watches his tee shot on the third hole during the third round of the PGA Championship golf tournament at the Valhalla Golf Club, Saturday, May 18, 2024, in Louisville, Ky. (AP Photo/Jeff Roberson)

Scottie Scheffler watches his tee shot on the third hole during the third round of the PGA Championship golf tournament at the Valhalla Golf Club, Saturday, May 18, 2024, in Louisville, Ky. (AP Photo/Jeff Roberson)

Scottie Scheffler waits to play on the second hole during the third round of the PGA Championship golf tournament at the Valhalla Golf Club, Saturday, May 18, 2024, in Louisville, Ky. (AP Photo/Jeff Roberson)

Scottie Scheffler waits to play on the second hole during the third round of the PGA Championship golf tournament at the Valhalla Golf Club, Saturday, May 18, 2024, in Louisville, Ky. (AP Photo/Jeff Roberson)

He shot 2-over 73 in the third round to close at 7 under for the tournament and drop from fourth to a tie for 24th. It snapped a string of 42 straight rounds of par or better for the world's top player, dating to Saturday at the Tour Championship last year.

“I definitely did not feel like myself today,” he said. “Yesterday happened, I did my best to recover from it and come out and compete. This morning was not my usual routine for a round. At the end of the day, I came out hoping to have a good round but I wasn’t able to get it done, which was frustrating.”

Though he said his arrest and trip to a holding cell the day before left his heart thumping and his head spinning, it didn't show on the course or the scoreboard; he shot 66 in Round 2. A day later, it was clear he was still adjusting to the stunning events of the previous 36 hours.

He started losing ground even before he stepped onto the course.

Justin Rose and Shane Lowry led the way, shooting 64 and 62 in a group more than an hour ahead of Scheffler's.

The scoring average at Valhalla was 69.55, the second-lowest for the third round of a PGA in history. In all, 15 players will begin the final round at double-digits under par; the previous record for a major was seven, according to Elias Sports Bureau.

But the reigning Masters champion got left out of the party.

He made two bogeys and a double over his first four holes, finished the front nine in 38 and shot his worst round of the season. Even though he struggled, he still felt the love. Chants of “Scottie, Scottie, Scottie,” were scattered across the course, never louder than when he made a short birdie putt on 18 to close the day.

Before that, it was an ugly mix of missed tee shots, bad lies in the rough and a few struggles with the putter that had more or less gone away during a season in which he has won four times.

“I was battling as hard as I could all day but every time I'd make a birdie, I’d bogey the next hole,” he said. “Way too many mistakes today. Obviously I'm pretty frustrated with the result.”

His struggles started on the par-4 second, where his approach shot landed deep in the rough to the left of the green. It took him two shots to get to the putting surface and he made double bogey.

On No. 4, his tee shot landed left of a fence in a penalty area to the left of the green. After taking a drop, Scheffler chunked the next chip. He made a 10-foot putt to save bogey.

He made two birdies after that, but three-putted from 30 feet on the par-3 eighth, the second putt a push from 3 feet that took a 270-degree spin around the cup and stayed out.

Scheffler's 73 was better than only five players in the 78-man field. He’ll enter Sunday trailing leaders Collin Morikawa and Xander Schauffele by eight.

One possible boost for the final 18 holes will be the return of his caddie, Ted Scott, who left town to attend his daughter's high school reunion, leaving the bag duties to Scheffler's friend, tour chaplain Brad Payne.

Scott is scheduled to return for the final round, which will start much earlier than Scheffler might have expected on a week where very little has gone to plan.

AP golf: https://apnews.com/hub/golf

Scottie Scheffler hits from the bunker on the 10th hole during the third round of the PGA Championship golf tournament at the Valhalla Golf Club, Saturday, May 18, 2024, in Louisville, Ky. (AP Photo/Sue Ogrocki)

Scottie Scheffler hits from the bunker on the 10th hole during the third round of the PGA Championship golf tournament at the Valhalla Golf Club, Saturday, May 18, 2024, in Louisville, Ky. (AP Photo/Sue Ogrocki)

Scottie Scheffler reacts to his chip to the green on the fourth hole during the third round of the PGA Championship golf tournament at the Valhalla Golf Club, Saturday, May 18, 2024, in Louisville, Ky. (AP Photo/Jeff Roberson)

Scottie Scheffler reacts to his chip to the green on the fourth hole during the third round of the PGA Championship golf tournament at the Valhalla Golf Club, Saturday, May 18, 2024, in Louisville, Ky. (AP Photo/Jeff Roberson)

Scottie Scheffler chips to the green on the fourth hole during the third round of the PGA Championship golf tournament at the Valhalla Golf Club, Saturday, May 18, 2024, in Louisville, Ky. (AP Photo/Jeff Roberson)

Scottie Scheffler chips to the green on the fourth hole during the third round of the PGA Championship golf tournament at the Valhalla Golf Club, Saturday, May 18, 2024, in Louisville, Ky. (AP Photo/Jeff Roberson)

Scottie Scheffler hits from the bunker on the seventh hole during the third round of the PGA Championship golf tournament at the Valhalla Golf Club, Saturday, May 18, 2024, in Louisville, Ky. (AP Photo/Jeff Roberson)

Scottie Scheffler hits from the bunker on the seventh hole during the third round of the PGA Championship golf tournament at the Valhalla Golf Club, Saturday, May 18, 2024, in Louisville, Ky. (AP Photo/Jeff Roberson)

Scottie Scheffler watches his tee shot on the third hole during the third round of the PGA Championship golf tournament at the Valhalla Golf Club, Saturday, May 18, 2024, in Louisville, Ky. (AP Photo/Jeff Roberson)

Scottie Scheffler watches his tee shot on the third hole during the third round of the PGA Championship golf tournament at the Valhalla Golf Club, Saturday, May 18, 2024, in Louisville, Ky. (AP Photo/Jeff Roberson)

Scottie Scheffler waits to play on the second hole during the third round of the PGA Championship golf tournament at the Valhalla Golf Club, Saturday, May 18, 2024, in Louisville, Ky. (AP Photo/Jeff Roberson)

Scottie Scheffler waits to play on the second hole during the third round of the PGA Championship golf tournament at the Valhalla Golf Club, Saturday, May 18, 2024, in Louisville, Ky. (AP Photo/Jeff Roberson)

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) — A tightly contested race in Virginia between one of America's most conservative congressmen and a challenger endorsed by former President Donald Trump is too close to call, The Associated Press said Monday.

The AP issued an advisory saying that the margin separating U.S. Rep. Bob Good and state Sen. John McGuire is likely to remain within a margin of a single percentage point. That means the race is eligible for a recount under state law.

Good, who currently trails by more than 300 votes out of nearly 63,000 cast, has said he will seek a recount if the state electoral board certifies McGuire as the winner.

McGuire’s lead has actually grown slightly since early Wednesday morning.

Good on Monday also told former Trump adviser and right-wing podcaster Steve Bannon that he will be pursuing a legal challenge to block the certification of the count in the city of Lynchburg, the largest city in the 5th Congressional District and a Good stronghold.

“Lynchburg is the big key. That can’t be certified. There’s no confidence in Lynchburg’s results,” Good said.

Good and others have claimed that the city botched the vote count by accepting ballots from a drop box after election night.

In a statement Monday, the city registrar acknowledged a procedural error but said fewer than 10 ballots, if any, were affected.

The statement from the registrar’s office says the drop box, located inside the registrar’s office, was emptied out just before 1 p.m. on Election Day. But the box was not emptied again until Friday, June 21. Seven ballots were inside.

The registrar’s statement says staffers in the registrar’s office saw multiple ballots dropped off legally in the afternoon on Election Day but did not see any ballots placed in the box after that.

Those seven ballots have since been mixed in with another batch of ballots, and the registrar has said counting has been placed on hold while they consult with the Virginia Department of Elections on what to do next.

The department of elections said in an email Monday that it’s monitoring the situation in Lynchburg. The state elections board is currently scheduled to meet July 2 to certify the results.

Only after the results are certified can Good request a recount.

McGuire, who claimed victory on election night, issued a statement Monday thanking Good for his service and suggesting that a recount or a legal challenge would be pointless and divisive.

“While I understand the desire to continue the fight, the outcome of this election will not change,” he said.

Both Good and McGuire are among Republicans who have raised concerns about election integrity in the wake of Trump’s false claims of voter fraud in his 2020 reelection defeat. Good was among more than 100 GOP House members who voted in January 2021 to object to the Electoral College count from states that Trump disputed.

In an election eve telephone rally with Trump last week, McGuire urged supporters to deliver him a margin of victory “too big to rig.”

If Good loses, he would be the first House incumbent to lose a primary challenge this year, with the exception of one race in which two incumbents faced off due to redistricting.

FILE - Rep. Bob Good, left, a candidate in the Republican primary for the state's 5th Congressional District, greets family members at a watch party in Lynchburg, Va.,, June 18, 2024. On Monday, June 24, 2024, The Associated Press said the race between Good and Sen. John McGuire was still too close to call. (AP Photo/P. Kevin Morley, File)

FILE - Rep. Bob Good, left, a candidate in the Republican primary for the state's 5th Congressional District, greets family members at a watch party in Lynchburg, Va.,, June 18, 2024. On Monday, June 24, 2024, The Associated Press said the race between Good and Sen. John McGuire was still too close to call. (AP Photo/P. Kevin Morley, File)

FILE - Virginia state Sen. John McGuire, a candidate in the Republican primary in the state's 5th Congressional District, joins supporters, June 18, 2024, in Lynchburg, Va. On Monday, June 24, 2024, The Associated Press said the race between McGuire and Rep. Bob Good was still too close to call. (AP Photo/Skip Rowland, File)

FILE - Virginia state Sen. John McGuire, a candidate in the Republican primary in the state's 5th Congressional District, joins supporters, June 18, 2024, in Lynchburg, Va. On Monday, June 24, 2024, The Associated Press said the race between McGuire and Rep. Bob Good was still too close to call. (AP Photo/Skip Rowland, File)

Virginia state Sen. John McGuire, a candidate in the Republican primary in the state's 5th Congressional District, joins supporters Tuesday, June 18, 2024, in Lynchburg, Va. (AP Photo/Skip Rowland)

Virginia state Sen. John McGuire, a candidate in the Republican primary in the state's 5th Congressional District, joins supporters Tuesday, June 18, 2024, in Lynchburg, Va. (AP Photo/Skip Rowland)

Virginia state Sen. John McGuire, a candidate in the Republican primary for the state's 5th Congressional District, speaks to supporters in Lynchburg, Va., Tuesday, June 18, 2024. (AP Photo/Skip Rowland)

Virginia state Sen. John McGuire, a candidate in the Republican primary for the state's 5th Congressional District, speaks to supporters in Lynchburg, Va., Tuesday, June 18, 2024. (AP Photo/Skip Rowland)

Supporter Phil Hamilton places campaign signs for Rep. Bob Good, a candidate in the Republican primary for the Virginia's 5th Congressional District, along Timberlake Road in Lynchburg, Va., Tuesday, June 18, 2024. (AP Photo/P. Kevin Morley)

Supporter Phil Hamilton places campaign signs for Rep. Bob Good, a candidate in the Republican primary for the Virginia's 5th Congressional District, along Timberlake Road in Lynchburg, Va., Tuesday, June 18, 2024. (AP Photo/P. Kevin Morley)

Rep. Bob Good, left, a candidate in the Republican primary for the state's 5th Congressional District, greets family members at a watch party in Lynchburg, Va., Tuesday, June 18, 2024. (AP Photo/P. Kevin Morley)

Rep. Bob Good, left, a candidate in the Republican primary for the state's 5th Congressional District, greets family members at a watch party in Lynchburg, Va., Tuesday, June 18, 2024. (AP Photo/P. Kevin Morley)

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