Love Maintains 10-Point Lead


CASTLE ROCK, Colo. -- Davis Love III tallied five points Saturday during the third round of The International to take a 10-point lead into the final round. Love has accumulated a 54-hole record 41 points to this point in the tournament.
John Rollins picked up five points in third round to climb to 31 points and solo second place. Vijay Singh stands alone in third place with 28 points and the Fijian is followed by Chris DiMarco and Retief Goosen at 26 points.
At The International, play is contested using the modified Stableford scoring system. Players receive two points for a birdie, five points for an eagle and eight points for a double eagle. Players lose one point for a bogey and three points for a double bogey or worse, with a par receiving a score of zero.
Love, who also set the 36-hole record with 36 points, cruised through his round. He rolled in a birdie at the par-four fifth to extend his lead to 11 points but, the 1990 International winner dropped a shot at the next.
The 1997 PGA Champion closed out his front side with a six-foot birdie putt at the ninth. He followed that up with a short birdie putt at the 10th.
Love cruised to the house with eight consecutive pars, but they were not all easy. At the 17th, his second shot to the par-5 bounced over the back of the green. His chip rolled onto the front fringe and he two-putted from there to save his par. He also saved par from greenside bunkers at 13 and 18.
'I'd say steady was a good word,' Love said of his round. 'It was obviously not as good as the last two days, but it was very steady. I hit a lot of good shots. I hit a couple greens that I missed in the wrong place, but I wasn't in danger of making a big score.'
One day after recording a PGA Tour record-tying three eagles in a single round, Love did not record a single point on the four par-5s Saturday. He knows that will not bode well for him on Sunday.
'Well, I birdied the hard holes today, but I just gave points away there,' said Love of the par-5s. 'Sometimes they give you a lot of points and sometimes they don't. They just didn't give up much today. I will have to do better on them tomorrow.'
Rollins rode a roller-coaster through his round. He started quickly with a birdie at the first, but dropped a shot with a bogey on No. 4. He lost another shot at the seventh, but came right back with a birdie at the eighth.
Around the turn, Rollins rolled in another birdie at the 10th to get to plus-4 points for his round. He climbed to plus-6 with a birdie at the 14th. However, he struggled to a three-putt bogey at the last to end his round with five points.
'I hit the ball well today, unfortunately I putted very poorly,' Rollins said. 'I had three three-putts and never really seemed like I had the speed of the greens down, which cost me some shots. All and all, I hit the ball well though.'
Rollins played in the same group as Love on Saturday for the first time in his career. They duo will play together again tomorrow.
'He's a great player and a great person and easy to play with. It was a fun day,' Rollins said. 'I look forward to another good day tomorrow.'
Rollins knows that the 10-point deficit is not difficult to overcome in this format. He is going to come out aggressively and see what that does for him.
'I want to get off to a quick start with the par-5 first hole,' Rollins said. 'You have a chance there that you can maybe make an eagle or definitely a birdie. So I am going to come out playing aggressive, see what happens. I am going to keep playing the way I have been playing and hopefully things will work out.'
Phil Mickelson had a very inconsistent round. He had two double bogeys, three bogeys and five birdies. That gave him one point for the round and moved him into solo sixth place with 23 points.
J.J. Henry picked up six points Saturday to climb to 22 points. Charles Howell III is one point behind him with 21.
There was a second cut after the third round with the low-36 players and ties advancing. A total of 39 players, who had 12 or more points, will tee it up for the final round.
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