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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 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 has been in the final group on Sunday six times in the last two years with four wins, including a major championship.

For Tim Petrovic, it will be something new in his first full year as a senior.

McCarron made his only bogey of the third round on the final hole to shoot a 5-under 66 and slip into a tie for the lead Saturday with Petrovic in the Senior PGA Championship. They were at 13 under par after Petrovic, seeking his first win as a senior and first major championship, shot 6-under 65.

''Well, I certainly feel comfortable being in the hunt, being in the last groups,'' said McCarron, who shot 66 and has shared the lead after each round this week at Harbor Shores. ''I've learned a lot over the last couple of years playing with Bernhard Langer. I've been fortunate enough to play with him in a lot of final groups and second-to-last groups, and battled it out with him and watched him. So I don't really let that kind of big moment get to me too much.''


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Petrovic, a one-time winner in 2005 on the PGA Tour, will be in the final group for the first time since 2010 in The Memorial.

''That's where you want to be,'' Petrovic said. ''Some guys say they don't want the lead, they would rather chase, but I would rather be in the lead. I would rather be in the last group, that's where you want to be when you show up here on Tuesday, Wednesday, you want to be in that last group because you have a better chance to win if you're in that group.''

McCarron, who has hit all 13 fairways in the third round and 24 in a row in the tournament, lamented two missed 4-foot putts in the last four holes. The first was a birdie chance at the par-5 15th and the second at 18 for par after he missed the green.

''I have to putt a little better tomorrow,'' he said. ''I missed a couple putts today coming in, but all in all it was a good, solid day. I hit the ball right where I was looking most of the time.''

Petrovic also had trouble at 15 when his 5-wood shot glanced off a mound in the fairway and ended up in the river that crosses in front of the green. He scrambled for a bogey.

''I kind of gave a shot back there, but Scott missed his birdie putt there and that kind of gave us a little life,'' he said. ''We finished strong. I made a putt (at 17) to kind of let him know we were still there.''

Petrovic played in the third-to-last group last week in the Regions Tradition, the first of consecutive majors on the PGA Tour Champions. He said it gave him a taste of being in the mix among the seniors and he has continued to play well.

''I felt really calm all week for some reason,'' he said. ''I'm just hitting the shots that I know I can hit and I'm driving the ball really well.''

McCarron said Sunday's are different when it gets to the final four or five holes and there is a chance to win.

''Especially in a major championship it's different,'' he said. ''It kind of gets your adrenaline going. You have to make sure you take a lot of deep breaths, and like I said, control your emotions. This is a big deal. And have fun. That's one of the things.''

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

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

Tom Byrum, who made a hole-in-one at the 17th in shooting a 67, was in a group at 8 under with Bob Estes, Jerry Kelly and Kevin Sutherland.