He did it during the worst weather of the day.
Johnson, who started his round on four-under for the tournament, steadied himself after squandering a four-shot advantage on the front nine as the field bunched up like rush hour traffic on the nearby Long Island Expressway.
"I said that's one of the strangest things I've ever seen and then just started laughing, to be honest".
Former Ryder Cup player Oliver Wilson, speaking on BBC Radio 5 live, labelled the incident "comical" and conceded Mickelson was "very lucky" to be handed "the softer option" of the two-shot penalty over potential disqualification.
"I feel my game is made for championship golf", said the extremely long-hitting Finau, who believes he is developing a complete, all-round game.
"You were seeing shots that were well played and not rewarded", said Mike Davis, the chief executive of the USGA. "Around here, it seems like when I do get out of position, I'm just trying to do everything I can to get it back into position, not try to push it, and just give myself a decent look ... something on the green where I can have a look at par".
That's a critical asset on a course such as Shinnecock, with its myriad challenges even before the elements are added in. Bubba Watson, Jason Day, Charl Schwartzel, Sergo Garcia, Adam Scott and a number of other notable players missed the cut as well.
"As the day went on it continued to get more tough", said two-times PGA Tour victor Berger, who noticed the course starting to become more hard on about the 12th hole. If I can shoot that or anybody who just made the cut, I think there's potential. This was a day when you weren't going to do that, you instead needed to stem the flow. He made triple-bogey there on Thursday, and then after playing the back side in even par Friday, got to the first, hit the fairway, then hit a wayward approach into tall rough.
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His four pro victories all have some on the European PGA circuit, including the Abu Dhabi Championship past year and this.
The scoring average of 75.33 was the highest for a third round in the U.S. Open since 2000 at Pebble Beach. There were a lot of missed putts during his 77, and he will be paired with Koepka, but they won't be in the final pairing. He needs every positive thought he can generate for a tournament that has caused him so much pain over the years.
"I do like the setup of a U.S. Open", the 27-year-old said.
The second hole is a rude awakening for most golfers. Woods continues to struggle with his short game, and he flirted with disaster a few too many times. It tests you mentally, physically.
"And. nobody had played it like it did yesterday in practice".
Rickie Fowler was a popular choice to contend for his first major title at the U.S. Open.
It sets up a Sunday that, depending on whether some of the fire is taken out of the golf course, could be magnificent or maddening.
"No, we're not on the edge, we could be on the edge, but we've surpassed it".
Stenson was asked if Johnson could be caught and said that the world's No 1 player was "always catchable". He wasn't backing off, either. I feel for the spectators who are seeing absolute pure carnage, unless they want to.