ROLAND, Ark. (Aug. 1, 2013) -- Two-time Walker Cup selection Patrick Rodgers is showing the rest of the field how it's done.
The Stanford sensation, who was one of the USGA's five initial selections for the Walker Cup squad last month, fired a third-round 66 at The Alotian Club and will head into the final round of stroke-play with a four-shot lead in the race for the No. 1 seed.
Rodgers started the day knotted with U.S. Public Links champion Jordan Niebrugge and first-round co-leader Seth Reeves of Georgia Tech. Niebrugge, who won the Wisconsin State Amateur in between national tournament, shot a 70 on Thursday and is alone in second. Reeves shot 72 and is tied for fourth.
The trio will be among 16 hoping to qualify for match play. The grueling Western Amateur, considered 'the Masters of amateur golf', features 72 holes of stroke play followed by a four-round match-play portion.
Michael Weaver, the Cal senior who's under strong consideration for one of the three remaining non-mid amateur Walker Cup slots, shot 71 on Thursday and is tied for sixth.
Two other hot players are tied for ninth place. Tyler Dunlap, who plays for Texas A&M, and Bryson DeChambeau are at 6-under and within the final 16 heading into the fourth and final round of stroke play.
Dunlap took second place at this past weekend's Porter Cup and managed to medal at U.S. Amateur qualifying on Monday in between stops.
Currently on the outside and looking to make a final-round move to reach match play are U.S. Open participant Cory McElyea (-5), Texas' Beau Hossler (-5), LSU's Curtis Thompson (-4) and South Carolina's Matthew NeSmith (-4).
The Western Amateur features 56 of the world's top 100 players and is annually one of the season's best events.
The international event is a true test and considered one of the hardest events to win among national amateur tournaments.
For full field results, use the link below.