Allan Moves to Top of Leaderboard

By Sports NetworkJune 10, 2006, 4:00 pm
GLENVIEW, Ill. -- Australia's Steve Allan fired a 6-under 65 on Saturday to fly into the lead after three rounds of the LaSalle Bank Open. He stands at 5-under-par 208 and is one ahead at The Glen Club.
Cameron Beckman posted a 3-under 68 and is tied for second place with Jason Dufner, who shot a 2-under 69 on Saturday. The pair is knotted at minus-4.
Allan wasted little time in getting into red figures on Saturday. He reached the par-5 first green in two with a rescue club, then two-putted for birdie from 40 feet.
He parred his next three holes, then collected his next birdie at the next par five. Allan laid up with his second shot at the fifth, then played a wedge to 15 feet to set up birdie. He made it two in a row with an 8-footer at the sixth.
Allan parred out on the front side, but flew up the leaderboard thanks to his play at the start of the second nine. He rolled in a 15-foot birdie putt at 10, then hit a 6-iron inside 3 feet for the easy birdie at the par-3 11th.
Allan collected his third birdie in a row at the 421-yard, par-4 12th. He knocked his 9-iron approach to a foot and kicked in the short birdie putt.
That would be Allan's last birdie as he parred his remaining six holes for the 54-hole lead.
'Luckily today I hit most of the fairways so that gave me an opportunity to hit some good irons,' said Allan. 'I've struggled with my putting this year, but I'm rolling it good this week.'
If Allan can advance to the winner's circle Sunday afternoon, it would be his first on the Nationwide Tour. He played the PGA TOUR the last five years and earned two runner-up finishes.
It doesn't hurt that the LaSalle Bank Open features the largest purse on the 2006 Nationwide Tour schedule.
'Obviously this tournament has the biggest purse of the season, but the less I think about winning it, the better chance I have,' admitted Allan. 'I was looking forward to coming here.'
Second-round co-leader Richard Johnson only managed a 1-over 72 on Saturday. He is tied for fourth place with Cliff Kresge, who carded a 3-under 68, at 3-under-par 210.
Nicholas Thompson, who shared the 36-hole lead with Johnson, was two worse than his fellow co-leader. He shot a 3-over 74 and is knotted in sixth place with Matt Hendrix, who posted a 3-under 68. The pair is tied at minus-1.
Bob Heintz (67), Chris Baryla (71), Doug LaBelle II (72) and Steve LeBrun (72) share eighth place at even-par 213.
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    DJ shoots 64 to surge up leaderboard in Abu Dhabi

    By Ryan LavnerJanuary 19, 2018, 1:48 pm

    Dustin Johnson stood out among a star-studded three-ball that combined to shoot 18 under par with just one bogey Friday at the Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship.

    Shaking off a sloppy first round at Abu Dhabi Golf Club, Johnson matched the low round of the day with a 64 that put him within four shots of Thomas Pieters’ lead.

    “I did everything really well,” Johnson said. “It was a pretty easy 64.”

    Johnson made four bogeys during an even-par 72 on Thursday and needed a solid round Friday to make the cut. Before long, he was closer to the lead than the cut line, making birdie on three of the last four holes and setting the pace in a group that also included good rounds from Rory McIlroy (66) and Tommy Fleetwood (68).

    Coming off a blowout victory at Kapalua, Johnson is searching for his first regular European Tour title. He tied for second at this event a year ago.

    Johnson’s second-round 64 equaled the low round of the day (Jorge Campillo and Branden Grace). 

    “It was just really solid all day long,” Johnson said. “Hit a lot of great shots, had a lot of looks at birdies, which is what I need to do over the next two days if I want to have a chance to win on Sunday.” 

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    Closing eagle moves Rory within 3 in Abu Dhabi

    By Ryan LavnerJanuary 19, 2018, 12:57 pm

    What rust? Rory McIlroy appears to be in midseason form.

    Playing competitively for the first time since Oct. 8, McIlroy completed 36 holes without a bogey Friday, closing with an eagle to shoot 6-under 66 to sit just three shots back at the Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship.

    “I’m right in the mix after two days and I’m really happy in that position,” he told reporters afterward.

    McIlroy took a 3 ½-month break to heal his body, clear his mind and work on his game after his first winless year since 2008, his first full season as a pro.

    He's back on track at a familiar playground, Abu Dhabi Golf Club, where he’s racked up eight top-11s (including six top-3s) in his past nine starts there.

    Full-field scores from the Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship

    McIlroy opened with a 69 Thursday, then gave himself even more chances on Day 2, cruising along at 4 under for the day when he reached the par-5 closing hole. After launching a 249-yard long iron to 25 feet, he poured in the eagle putt to pull within three shots of Thomas Pieters (65). 

    Despite the layoff, McIlroy edged world No. 1 Dustin Johnson, coming off a blowout victory at Kapalua, by a shot over the first two rounds. 

    “DJ is definitely the No. 1 player in the world right now, and one of, if not the best, driver of the golf ball," McIlroy said. "To be up there with him over these first two days, it proves to me that I’m doing the right things and gives me a lot of confidence going forward.”

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    Duke to fill in for injured Pavin at CareerBuilder

    By Ryan LavnerJanuary 19, 2018, 12:25 pm

    Ken Duke will fill in for Corey Pavin for the next two rounds of the CareerBuilder Challenge – with nothing at stake but his amateur partner’s position on the leaderboard.

    Pavin was 4 over par when he withdrew after 17 holes Thursday because of a neck injury. Tournament officials phoned Duke, the first alternate, and asked if he would take Pavin’s spot and partner with Luis Lopez for the next two rounds, even though he would not receive any official money.

    Duke accepted and explained his decision on Twitter:

    Playing on past champion’s status, the 48-year-old Duke has made only four starts this season, with a best finish of a tie for 61st at the RSM Classic.

    Pavin received a sponsor exemption into the event, his first PGA Tour start since the 2015 Colonial. 

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    Kelly, Sauers co-lead in Hawaii; Monty, Couples in mix

    By Associated PressJanuary 19, 2018, 3:52 am

    KAILUA-KONA, Hawaii - Fresh off a solid performance on Oahu, Jerry Kelly shot an 8-under 64 on the Big Island on Thursday to share the first-round lead at the Mitsubishi Electric Championship, the season opener on the PGA Tour Champions.

    The 51-year-old Kelly, who tied for 14th at the PGA Tour's Sony Open last week in Honolulu, birdied five of his final seven holes to shoot 30 on the back nine at Hualalai. He won twice last season, his first on the over-50 tour.

    Gene Sauers also shot 64, going bogey-free amid calm conditions. Thirty-two of the 44 players broke par in the limited-field event, which includes winners from last season, past champions of the event, major champions and Hall of Famers.

    Rocco Mediate and Colin Montgomerie were one shot back, and Fred Couples, Kevin Sutherland and Kirk Triplett were another shot behind.

    Bernhard Langer, defending the first of his seven 2017 titles, was in the middle of the pack after a 69.