Haas co-leads 3M Championship

By Associated PressAugust 6, 2011, 12:54 am

BLAINE, Minn. – Jay Haas reeled off four straight birdies to complete a round of 8-under 64 on Friday, taking a share of the lead with John Huston after the first round of the 3M Championship.

Haas, who also recorded a hole-in-one earlier in the round, recorded successive bogeys when he missed short putts on No. 13 and 14 but immediately got back in the groove by sinking a 30-foot putt on No. 15 to start his strong finish.

“That was huge because I’d gone back to 4-under and I was a little disappointed to be only 4-under at that stage because I played pretty well,” Haas said. “I’d been playing beautifully. I was frustrated that I’d given two shots back, but at the same time I felt if I kept playing this way I’m going to get some more chances.”

He hit a wedge to about 5 feet on No. 16, and a 6-iron to about 15 feet on No. 17 to set up more birdies. Haas settled for birdie on the par-5 No. 18 after two-putting from about 10 feet.

“It was a very, very eventful day,” Haas said.

After recording par on the first three holes, Haas’s tee shot with a 5-iron on the 184-yard fourth hole landed about a foot short and bounced into the hole.

“It was probably my best shot ever that went in the hole. It was just a pretty shot from the start,” he said. “I was laughing with Mark (Calcavecchia) because he’d hit a beautiful 5-iron shot about 10 feet left of the hole, and I said walking up to the green, ‘I’d have taken your shot.’ Good shots don’t always go in the hole; great shots don’t always go in the hole.”

Haas drained a 30-footer on No. 5 to begin a string of three straight birdies.

Huston, who has one win in seven Tour starts since turning 50 on June 1, bogeyed the first hole, but made six birdies in a seven-hole span to get to 6-under after the 12th hole. He closed with two straight birdies.

“Everybody knows you’re going to have to shoot low scores here. Fortunately, I was able to get off to a good start today and set myself set up for the weekend,” he said.

Gary Hallberg, Tom Lehman, Peter Senior and Rod Spittle were one shot back at the TPC Twin Cities. Calcavecchia, who finished second last year, was two shots back after a 66. Joining him were David Eger, Kenny Perryand Joey Sindelar.

Brad Faxon, playing in his first event on the Champions Tour, was among a group of nine players shooting 68.

Lehman, a native Minnesotan playing the tournament for the first time, birdied his first three holes, but did not get another until going back-to-back on Nos. 11 and 12.

“I was happy with the way I played. … I drove the ball very well, my iron shots were solid and I rolled the ball decently,” he said. “It’s a good start.”

The combination of mild temperatures, high dew points and little wind meant 53 of the 80 players finished under par.

“You’re going to have to put up 20-under this week,” Senior said. “I don’t think the course is going to play tough enough for the guys to have any sort of problem with it.”

Because of the nearly 2 inches of rain received in the past week, the only complaint was that balls hit off the tee would sometimes stick in the damp fairway and leave mud on the ball, reducing the player’s ability to control a second shot.

“I had four or five shots that did not go within 20, 25 yards of where I wanted them to go,” said Sindelar, who suggested lift, clean and place may want to be used if the course doesn’t dry out.

Defending champion David Frost shot a 1-under 71. No champion has defended his title in the event’s 19-year history.


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Grillo still hunting follow-up to debut win

By Nick MentaMay 26, 2018, 10:53 pm

Following a round of 1-under 69 Saturday, Emiliano Grillo will enter Sunday's final round at Colonial four shots behind leader Justin Rose.

Grillo is hunting his first win since he took the 2015 Safeway Open in his rookie debut as a PGA Tour member. 

The young Argentinian finished 11th in the FedExCup points race that season, contending in big events and finishing runner-up at the 2016 Barclays.

In the process, Grillo had to learn to pace himself and that it can be fruitless to chase after success week to week.

"That was a hot run in there," Grillo said Saturday, referring to his rookie year. "I played, in 2016, I played the majors very well. I played the big tournaments very well. I was in contention after two, three days in most of the big events.


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"I think, you know, I wanted to do better. I pushed for it. Some of the tournaments I ended up being 50th or 60th just because I wanted to play. I wanted to play well so badly. That played against me, so I learned from that. In that rookie year, I learned that."

Grillo was still plenty successful in his sophomore season, advancing to the BMW Championship last fall.

But now he's beginning to regain some of that form that made him such an immediate success on Tour. Grillo has recorded four top-10 finishes year - a T-9 at Mayakoba, a T-8 at Honda, a T-3 at Houston, and a T-9 at Wells Fargo - and will now look to outduel to U.S. Open champs in Rose and Brooks Koepka on Sunday at Colonial.

"Well, he's top 10 in the world, so everything he does he does it pretty well," Grillo said of Rose. "You know, he does his own thing. Like I say, he's top 10 in the world. Nothing wrong with his game. ...

"He's in the lead on a Sunday. Doesn't matter where you're playing, he's got to go out and shoot under par. He's got 50 guys behind him trying to reach him, and I'm one of those. I've just got to go out and do what he did today on those first five or six holes and try to get him in the early holes."

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Koepka looking to make hay on Horrible Horseshoe

By Nick MentaMay 26, 2018, 10:26 pm

The Horrible Horseshoe - Nos. 3, 4 and 5 at Colonial Country Club - annually ranks as one of the toughest three-hole stretches on the PGA Tour.

Consider Brooks Koepka undeterred.

Last year's U.S. Open champ has played the stretch 2 over this week but knows that if he's going to have any chance at catching Justin Rose on Sunday, he's going to need take advantage of the par-5 first and then find a way to pick up shots on the Horseshoe.

"I feel like just need to get off to a good start on this golf course," Koepka said after a third-round 67 Saturday. "If you can get 2 or 3 under through six holes, I think you'll be right there."

Koepka will start the final round four behind Rose, as he looks to win for the first time since his maiden major victory last year.


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The big-hitter missed nearly four months this year with a wrist injury and is progressing quickly in his comeback despite dislocating his wrist on two different occasions over the last two months.

Koepka missed the cut with partner Marc Turnesa at the Zurich Classic in his competitive return before following up with a tie for 42nd at the Wells Fargo Championship and a tie for 11th at The Players Championship.

Now, thanks to a closing birdie Sunday, he finds himself playing alongside Rose in the final group on Sunday.

"I feel like my game is coming around," he said. "[At Zurich], I was five days into touching clubs. I am finally finding a rhythm and feel like I'm getting really close. ...

"Just want to get off to a good start [tomorrow]. That's really all I am trying to do. You put together a good solid round tomorrow, you never know what can happen. The important thing is we were just trying to get in that final group. I thought the putt on 18 was kind of big to get in that final group and play with Rosey."

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Rose leads Koepka, Grillo by four at Colonial

By Nick MentaMay 26, 2018, 9:06 pm

On the strength of a 4-under 66 Saturday, Justin Rose will take a four-shot lead over Brooks Koepka and Emiliano Grillo into the final round of the Fort Worth Invitational. Here's where things stand through 54 holes at Colonial Country Club.

Leaderboard: Rose (-14), Koepka (-10), Grillo (-10), Corey Conners (-8), Jon Rahm (-8), Louis Oosthuizen (-8), J.T. Poston (-8), Ryan Armour (-8)

What it means: The fifth-ranked player in the world is 18 holes from his ninth PGA Tour victory and his second this season. Up one to start the third round, Rose extended his lead to as much as five with birdies on four of his first six holes. Through 54 holes, Rose has made 17 birdies and just three bogeys. The 2013 U.S. Open winner and 2016 Olympic gold medalist has a history of winning at iconic venues - Muirfield Village, Aronimink, Cog Hill, Doral, Merion and Congressional - and now looks to add Colonial to the list. He'll be chased on Sunday by Grillo, the young Argentinian who won his first Tour start as a member in 2015, and Koepka, last year's U.S. Open winner who continues to impress in his injury comeback despite ongoing wrist issues.

Round of the day: Corey Conners and Ted Potter both turned in 7-under 63. Potter was bogey-free and Conners came home in 6-under 29 on the back nine.

Best of the rest: Jon Rahm, Louis Oosthuizen, Brian Harman and Michael Thompson all signed for 64. Rahm called his six-birdie start the best 10 holes he's played so far this year.

Biggest disappointment: Jordan Spieth has finished second-first-second in the last three years at this event, but he's yet to find his normal Colonial form through three rounds. Spieth, who said Friday he was capable of shooting "10 or 12 under" over the weekend, shot even-par 70 Saturday. He sits in T-38 at 3 under for the week, 11 back.

Shot of the day: Rory Sabbatini closed out his third round Saturday with this eagle holeout from 134 yards at the 18th.

His colorful scorecard featured three bogeys, two birdies, a double bogey and that eagle. It added up to a 1-over 71. 

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McCarron closes with only bogey, shares lead

By Associated PressMay 26, 2018, 8:49 pm

BENTON HARBOR, Mich. - Scott McCarron, seeking a second senior major title to go with his 2017 Senior Players Championship, made his only bogey of the third round on the final hole to slip into a tie for the lead Saturday with Tim Petrovic in the Senior PGA Championship.

They were at 13 under par after Petrovic, seeking his first major, shot 65. McCarron has shared the lead through three rounds.

England's Paul Broadhurst, the 2016 British Senior Open winner, matched the best third-round score in tournament history with a 64. He was at 11 under.

Miguel Angel Jimenez, coming off his first major championship last week at the Regions Tradition, shot 65 and was 9 under.

Tom Byrum, who made a hole-in-one in shooting a 67, was in a group at 8 under.