ORLANDO, Fla. – Adam Scott’s seven-shot lead after 36 holes was trimmed to three Saturday at Bay Hill, but the Aussie still appears in control with one round to go. Here’s what You Oughta Know heading into the final round of the Arnold Palmer Invitational:
- Scott is looking for his 11th PGA Tour win, which would put him atop the world rankings. Should he win – and assuming neither he nor current world No. 1 Tiger Woods plays either of the next two weeks – Scott will be No. 1 when he begins defense of his title at the Masters.
- Scott is trying to go wire to wire at Bay Hill, a feat accomplished only once in this event. Fred Couples led after each round in 1992, winning in Orlando just four weeks before he claimed his lone green jacket at the Masters.
- After John Senden’s victory last week at the Valspar Championship, Scott is looking to make it back-to-back Aussie winners on the PGA Tour. The last time players from Down Under won in consecutive weeks was in 2010, when Scott won the Valero Texas Open, then Jason Day took the HP Byron Nelson Championship.
- Scott could become just the fifth international-born winner at Bay Hill, joining South Africa’s Ernie Els (1998, 2010), Australia’s Rod Pampling (2006), Fiji’s Vijay Singh (2007) and Scotland’s Martin Laird (2011).
- Keegan Bradley will begin the final round in second place, three shots behind Scott. Bradley has not won since the 2012 WGC-Bridgestone Invitational, but each of his three PGA Tour victories featured a final-round comeback.
- At No. 59 in the world, Chesson Hadley hopes to crack the top 50 by March 31 to qualify for the Masters. Hadley is tied for fifth, five shots off the pace. A top-five finish would likely earn the 26-year-old enough points to move inside the top 50 when the rankings are published Monday.
- Matt Every and Jason Kokrak have combined for 157 career starts on the PGA Tour, but neither has a win. Every’s best finish was a tie for second at the 2012 Valero Texas Open, which he equaled later that year at Disney, while Kokrak’s lone runner-up finish came at the 2012 Frys.com Open. The pair will begin the final round tied for third, four shots behind Scott.
- Sam Saunders, Arnold Palmer’s grandson, is tied for 15th at 5 under after three straight sub-par rounds. Saunders is making his fifth start in this event, where his best finish is T-30 in 2011. His best career finish in 21 PGA Tour starts is a tie for 15th at the 2011 AT&T Pebble Beach National Pro-Am.