Late eagle propels Bae to 4-shot lead at


Sang-Moon Bae made a 15-foot par-saving putt on the 16th hole, then followed with an eagle and a birdie, taking the lead in the Open. Bae shot a 7-under-par 65 to get to 16 under, good for a four-shot lead over Zachary Blair. Here is the skinny after 54 holes in Napa, California.

The leaderboard: Sang-Moon Bae (-16), Zachary Blair (-12), Matt Kuchar (-11), Scott Langley (-11), Brooks Koepka (-11), Martin Laird (-11)

What it means: Bae, who started the third round one shot behind leader Martin Laird, got off to a sizzling start, birdieing five holes in a row starting at No. 2. After bogeying the seventh, he turned in 4-under 32. He cooled off on the back nine, with no birdies and only one bogey through No. 14. He birdied the par-3 15th, but it was his par save on the par-5 16th that might have saved his round. Bae was in a hazard beside the green in two, and failed to reach the green on either of his next two shots. But he rolled in a putt from the fringe to salvage par. He then drove the 292-yard, par-4 17th and sank a 7-foot putt for eagle.

Round of the day: Bae's 65, which he saved by getting up and down from the middle of the fairway on 18, was the day's best score.

Best of the rest: On a day with perfect scoring conditions, Matt Kuchar, Retief Goosen and Robert Allenby matched 6-under rounds of 66.

Biggest disappointment: Mark Hubbard shot 75 and dropped 25 spots on the leaderboard, from fourth to 29th.

Main storyline heading into Sunday: Bae won the 2013 HP Byron Nelson Championship, but he hasn't had even a top-10 finish since. Blair finished 41st on the Tour's regular-season money list, but finished second in the circuit's tour championship. For Kuchar, a win might take some of the sting out of the Ryder Cup loss.