Maruyama Maintains Sony Lead


04 Sony OpenHONOLULU -- Shigeki Maruyama of Japan used an ace at the fourth hole and a birdie at the last on Saturday to maintain his one-shot lead after three rounds of the Sony Open in Hawaii. He posted a 2-under 68 and stands at 10-under-par 200 at Waialae Country Club.
Brett Quigley also shot a 2-under 68 on Saturday and is alone in second place at minus-9. Paul Azinger, who made this his first win on tour after fighting cancer in 2000, shot a 3-under 67 in the third round and is in third at 8-under-par 202.
Larry Mize matched the low round of the day with a 6-under 64. He is tied for fourth place with Robert Gamez (68) at 7-under-par 203.
One day after 15-year-old Michelle Wie missed the cut, golf was the main focus and Maruyama, who led by one shot at the start of the third round, did not get off to a great start.
He drove into the rough on the right and was forced to lay up short of the putting surface. Maruyama's third missed the green and when it was all added up, he left with double bogey and lost his lead.
Maruyama atoned for the mistake at the par-3 fourth. He used a 6-iron at the 202-yard hole and landed 20 feet short of the hole. The ball rolled directly into the cup and Maruyama was back into the tournament.
'That saved my game,' said Maruyama. 'I knew that was a good ball after I hit the ball, but no one, not even me, I wasn't expecting the ball to go into the hole.'
Maruyama made only one birdie around the turn so Quigley took his spot atop the leaderboard. Quigley collected three birdies in a row, starting at the ninth and all from inside 10 feet.
Things fell apart for Quigley at the 15th. The wind was strong on Saturday and Quigley had trouble picking a club. His approach came up short of the green and he made bogey to fall out of the lead. Quigley's play did not get better on 16 as he drove right into the television area. He somehow ran home a 12-footer to save par, but Maruyama was coming back to reclaim first place.
At the 13th, Maruyama missed a 20-foot par putt and fell two behind Quigley. Maruyama, a three-time winner on the PGA Tour, rebounded at the 14th when he sank an 18-footer for birdie. He was only one back of Quigley, but the two were even after Quigley's bogey at the 15th.
The par-five closing hole proved to be the reason that Maruyama maintained his lead. Azinger and Quigley played the hole first and Quigley found trouble with a drive that landed in a fairway bunker. He laid up in the rough, hit his third 25 feet short of the flag and missed the birdie putt.
Azinger hit two strong shots to come up just short of the green, but hit a poor chip. He left with par and walked off to the clubhouse at 8-under-par 202.
Maruyama found the fairway off the tee and had 251 yards to the flag. His second made it to the green and his eagle try nearly fell into the cup. Maruyama tapped in for birdie and took the 54-hole lead in a PGA Tour event for the third time. The last two times (2002 Byron Nelson & 2003 Chrysler Classic of Greensboro) Maruyama marched on to the winner's circle.
Quigley will have a good chance at getting win No. 1 on the PGA Tour.
'I'm having fun,' said Quigley, who played with Azinger in the third round. 'We talked cars and just goofed around and took our mind of the wind.'
World No. 1 Vijay Singh shot a 67 on Saturday and is tied for sixth place with Charles Howell III, who fired a 64 in the third round. The duo is knotted at 6-under-par 204.
American Ryder Cup captain Tom Lehman (70), Justin Rose (72), Bart Bryant (66) and Adam Scott (69) share eighth place at 5-under-par 205.
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