Bolli Hoping for Wire-to-Wire Win

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BOISE, Idaho -- Justin Bolli will attempt to go wire-to-wire en route to victory at the Boise Open. He shot a 2-under 69 Saturday to reach 12-under-par 201 and open a one-stroke lead at Hillcrest Country Club.
 
Jimmy Walker, who has two wins this season and can advance directly to the PGA Tour if he wins on Sunday, thanks to the battlefield promotion, fired an 8-under 63 on Saturday. He is tied for second place with Michael Long (64), David Hearn (65) and Scott Gump (68) at 11-under-par 202.
 
Bolli, who has held the lead by himself after the first two rounds, struggled early and was 1 over par after his first four holes. Most of the players behind him on the leaderboard were already on their way to low rounds, so Bolli needed to get into gear.
 
'It was very tough,' admitted Bolli. 'Jimmy (Walker) shot 8 under and it seemed they were all 4 or 5 under on the day. It was definitely hard to get it back.'
 
Bolli rebounded with a 10-foot birdie putt at No. 8, but he never sustained the momentum and parred his next five holes. He then bogeyed the 14th, but went on a run that sent him to the top of the leaderboard.
 
He birdied 15, then hit his second shot behind the green at the par-5 16th. Bolli chipped to 12 feet and sank the birdie putt to join the leaders at minus-11. Bolli took sole possession of first with a 20-foot birdie putt at No. 17.
 
Bolli had a good chance of extending his lead at No. 18. He was in the first cut on the left side off the tee, but rolled his second to 4 feet. Bolli misread his putt and settled for par and a chance at becoming the first wire-to-wire winner this season on the Nationwide Tour.
 
'I would think I would need to shoot 3, 4 under par tomorrow to win,' said Bolli. 'There are four guys behind me at 11 under. I'll still have to play pretty aggressively.'
 
Walker flew out of the gate on Saturday with a 30-foot birdie putt at the first and an up-and-down birdie from off the green at the par-5 second. Walker reached the par-5 third green in two with a 2-iron and rolled in the 25-foot eagle putt.
 
'We were off and running,' said Walker, who won this year's Panama Open and Louisiana Open. 'I got off to a quick start and I had a lot of firepower today.'
 
Walker sandwiched a pair of birdies around a bogey at No. 7, but still made the turn at 5-under 31. He birdied 10 and 12, but dropped a shot to par at the 13th. Walker made a 9-footer to save par at the 14th, then collected his second eagle of the round at the 16th, also from 25 feet.
 
Long made his move up the leaderboard with fine play around the turn. He birdied four, but tallied five birdies in a six-hole span from the seventh, all in the five to 20-foot range.
 
He missed the green with his second shot at the par-5 16th, but chipped to 7 feet to set up birdie.
 
'The putter was working really well especially considering how quick and firm the greens were,' said Long, who was born in New Zealand, but now lives in Australia. 'It's not that easy out there. It's fairly tough to hit it close.'
 
Hearn eagled the third, then mixed two birdies and two bogeys over his next seven holes. He drained a long birdie putt at 13, then recorded two more birdies at 15 and 16.
 
He closed his round with a 6-foot birdie putt at the 18th to get into good position for win No. 1 on the Nationwide Tour.
 
'I can't be happier with my results,' said Hearn.
 
Gump birdied three in a row from the 14th to go to 12 under par. He bogeyed 17 to fall one out of the lead.
 
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