DETROIT — Tony Finau and Taylor Pendrith are in a Detroit duel.
Finau shot a 7-under-par 65 on Saturday to match Pendrith, who had a 66, at 21-under 195 with 18 holes to go in the Rocket Mortgage Classic at Detroit Golf Club.
"If we put together a good round," Finau said, "might be a two-man race."
The 3M Open winner last week in Minnesota, Finau is trying to become the PGA Tour's first player to win consecutive regular-season tournaments in three years. The 32-year-old American is seeking his fourth win overall.
Pendrith, a 31-year-old Canadian, had been a stroke ahead of Finau entering the round — they shared the first-round lead after each shot a 64 on Thursday — and the tour rookie kept Finau from getting away by making birdies on four of his last five holes Saturday.
"I probably have more pressure just because I've never won before and Tony's a multiple winner and he won last week," said Pendrith, who had the third-round lead by three shots last October at the Bermuda Championship before closing with a 76 and finishing a career-best fifth.
In March, he was 13th at The Players Championship and came away with a career-best $327,222 payday — and a broken rib that sidelined him for four months.
Rookie of the year front-runner Cameron Young (65) was four strokes back. He was also highly realistic.
"I have to play a ridiculous round of golf to have any chance," he said.
Chattanooga's Stephan Jaeger was five shots back after a 65. The former Baylor School and University of Tennessee at Chattanooga standout from Germany made just one bogey Saturday, and he closed with three straight birdies to post eight overall in the round.
The 33-year-old is seeking his first PGA Tour win. Jaeger's best finish this season was a tie for sixth at the Wells Fargo Championship in May.
Patrick Cantlay, No. 4 in the Official World Golf Ranking, was six shots behind after a 66.
"I've got to get off to a hot start and keep the pedal down," Cantlay said. "Obviously this golf course has no defense and there's going to be a ton of birdies out there."
Pendrith was the second-round leader after setting the tournament's 36-hole record at 15-under 129. On Saturday, he and Finau took turns pulling and falling into ties and taking leads.
"It's almost like a match play situation where we kind of flipped the script there on each other in the beginning," Finau said. "We both have done a great job up to this point through 54 holes of maintaining our composure."
Pendrith opened with a six-foot birdie putt to take a two-shot lead. Finau pulled within a stroke on the next hole, making a 20-foot chip from the greenside rough for birdie.
"Stay hot, Tony!" a fan shouted at a player without a bogey this week.
Pendrith, who had his share of fans make the 4-hour drive from Ontario, looked cool and calm as he bumped fists with two young boys as he walked to the third tee.
"It had a nice feel to it, a lot of energy from the crowd and both played some solid golf and kind of feeding off each other," Finau said. "It was nice to have that type of energy."
Finau pulled into the lead with a 15-foot putt at No. 3, then Pendrith pulled his three-foot putt to miss an opportunity to stay ahead.
"Maybe a little nerves," he acknowledged.
Pendrith followed that with an errant tee shot to the left on the par-5 631-yard fourth hole that put him in the No. 6 greenside rough, leaving him behind several towering tees in his path. He hit a shot 104 yards to the hole, an approach within 16 feet and made the putt to restore his one-stroke lead.
Finau equaled Pendrith at 18 under at the turn after making birdies at Nos. 7 and 8 while Pendrith missed a one-foot putt and made a bogey on the ninth hole.
Pendrith ended up behind a tree again at No. 13, forcing him to chip back onto the fairway, leading to a bogey that dropped him him into a second-place tie with Young.
"Just kind of hit a poor tee ball and maybe got a little bit of a bad break right behind the tree," Pendrith said.
Pendrith, who won twice on the PGA Tour Canada, bounced back from his second bogey with three straight birdies to pull back into a tie with two holes to play.
"To get three in a row after that was a big momentum boost and obviously set myself up nicely with those three holes," he said.
Finau went ahead at 17 with a birdie, and Pendrith tied it again with a birdie on the 54th hole.
If Finau can outlast the competition to win Sunday, he will be the first to win two straight regular-season events since since Brendon Todd in 2019.
LIV: Stenson lone leader
BEDMINSTER, N.J. — Henrik Stenson overcame a double bogey on his third hole with a long eagle putt five holes later and enough birdies for a 2-under 69 and a three-shot lead over Dustin Johnson entering the final round of an LIV Golf tournament at Trump National Golf Club Bedminster.
Stenson was at 9-under 133 through 36 holes of the 54-hole, cut-free event, one of only 13 players in the 48-man field who remained under par.
Two weeks ago, Stenson had just missed the cut in the British Open and was still the Ryder Cup captain for Europe. Now the 46-year-old Swede is 18 holes away from a $4 million prize, more than double the biggest check of his career.
"It was a bit of a grind at times, and then we kind of came through with some really good shots and made some nice putts," said the 2016 British Open champion, who closed his round with a bogey.
Johnson has hit the ball consistently well for two days, and the two-time major winner got enough putts to fall for a 69 that put him in Sunday's final group with Stenson.
Only 14 players shot par or better in the windy round. Talor Gooch had the best score by three shots, a 64 that moved him into a tie for third at 5 under with Carlos Ortiz (70) and Patrick Reed (73).
Reed, who shared the first-round lead with Stenson, was keeping pace Saturday until he began the back nine with three straight bogeys. He rallied with an eagle late in his round to remain in the mix.