Trio Share Third Round Lead in New York

By Sports NetworkJune 22, 2002, 4:00 pm
Findley Lake, NY - Hunter Haas posted a five-under 66 Saturday to join former PGA Tour players Kelly Gibson and Doug Barron in a share of the lead through three rounds of the Lake Erie Charity Classic. The trio stands at eight-under-par 205 and owns a two-shot lead over a large group of players at the Upper Course at Peek 'n Peak Resort.
Anthony Painter (66), Patrick Moore (68), Wes Short (68), Todd Fanning (69), Tyler Williamson (70) and Ben Bates (71) share fourth place at six-under par.
Overnight leader Omar Uresti struggled badly Saturday with a round of six- over-par 77. He collected two birdies, four bogeys and two double-bogeys to fall into a tie for 26th at minus-two.
Haas was the first co-leader to make his move up the board. He tallied four birdies in his first eight holes to get near the top spot. Over the back nine, Haas traded a pair of bogeys with a pair of birdies but got into the clubhouse with the lead after a birdie on No. 17.
'I hit a lot of irons off the tees here just to get the ball into position,' said Haas, who played on the PGA Tour last season. 'Fairways and greens, that's the key isn't it?'
Haas is in an unfamiliar position being this close to the lead. His best finish in seven starts is a tie for 11th in his first event of the season, the Louisiana Open.
'I'll probably be nervous tomorrow,' said Haas. 'Everyone gets nervous. Everyone has butterflies. If they tell you they're not nervous, they're lying.'
While the 25-year-old Haas will try and handle nerves on Sunday, his fellow leaders can call upon their experience playing the PGA Tour.
'I'm comfortable being in this position,' said Barron, who has two second- place finishes in his last three starts. 'I've been in the hunt the last couple of tournament but I've been the pursuer. Now they sort of have to come and get me, and that's what I like.'
Barron was two-under on his round after bogeying the par-three 13th hole. He parred 14 but carded back-to-back birdies at 15 and 16 to get into a share of the lead.
Gibson collected three birdies and now has a streak of 41 consecutive holes without a bogey.
'My patience level is a little better than it normally is,' said Gibson. 'I'm not very good at being patient but maybe tomorrow will be a different story.'
Greg Gregory was in second place at the start of Saturday's round but carded a two-over 73 to slip into a tie for 10th at five-under par.
Full field scores from the Lake Erie Charity Classic at Peek'n Peak Resort
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Expired visa, helicopter, odd clubs all part of Vegas' journey

By Ryan LavnerJuly 19, 2018, 3:48 pm

CARNOUSTIE, Scotland – Jhonattan Vegas thought someone was playing a practical joke on him.

Or maybe he was stuck in the middle of a horror movie.

Scheduled to leave for The Open a week ago, he didn’t arrive at Carnoustie until a little more than an hour before his first-round tee time Thursday.

“Even if somebody tried to do that on purpose,” he said, “you couldn’t really do it.”

The problem was an expired visa.

Vegas said that he must have gotten confused by the transposed date on the visa – “Guessing I’ve been living in America too long” – and assumed that he was cleared to travel.

No problem, he was told. He’d have a new visa in 24 hours.

Full-field scores from the 147th Open Championship

Full coverage of the 147th Open Championship

Except the consulate in New York didn’t respond to his application the next day, keeping him in limbo through the weekend. Then, on Monday, he was told that he’d applied for the wrong visa. UPS got shut down in New York and his visa never left, so Vegas waited in vain for seven hours in front of the consulate in Houston. He finally secured his visa on Wednesday morning, boarded a flight from Houston to Toronto, and then flew to Glasgow, the final leg of a 14-hour journey.

His agent arranged a helicopter ride from Glasgow to Carnoustie to ensure that he could make his 10:31 a.m. (local) tee time.

One more issue? His clubs never made it. They were left back in Toronto.

His caddie, Ruben Yorio, scrambled to put together a new bag, with a mismatched set of woods, irons, wedges and putter.

“Luckily the (equipment) vans are still here,” Vegas said. “Otherwise I probably would have played with members’ clubs today.”

He hit about 20 balls on the range – “Luckily they were going forward” – but Carnoustie is one of the most challenging links in the world, and Vegas was working off of two hours’ sleep and without his own custom-built clubs. He shot 76 but, hey, at least he tried.

“It was fun,” he said, “even though the journey was frustrating.”

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'Brain fart' leads to Spieth's late collapse

By Rex HoggardJuly 19, 2018, 2:44 pm

CARNOUSTIE, Scotland – The closing stretch at Carnoustie has famously ruined many a solid round, so Jordan Spieth’s misadventures on Thursday should not have been a complete surprise, but the truth is the defending champion’s miscues were very much self-inflicted.

Spieth was cruising along at 3 under par, just two shots off the early lead, when he made a combination of errors at the par-4 15th hole. He hit the wrong club off the tee (4-iron) and the wrong club for his approach (6-iron) on his way to a double bogey-6.

“The problem was on the second shot, I should have hit enough club to reach the front of the green, and even if it goes 20 yards over the green, it's an easy up-and-down,” Spieth said. “I just had a brain fart, and I missed it into the location where the only pot bunker where I could actually get in trouble, and it plugged deep into it. It was a really, really poor decision on the second shot, and that cost me.”

Full-field scores from the 147th Open Championship

Full coverage of the 147th Open Championship

Spieth continued to compound his problems with a sloppy bogey at the 16th hole, and a drive that sailed left at 18 found the Barry Burn en route to a closing bogey and a 1-over 72.

The miscues were more mental, a lack of execution, than they were an example of how difficult the closing stretch at Carnoustie can be, and that’s not good enough for Spieth.

“That's what I would consider as a significant advantage for me is recognizing where the misses are,” said Spieth, who was tied for 68th when he completed his round. “It felt like a missed opportunity.”

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Perez: R&A does it right, 'not like the USGA'

By Rex HoggardJuly 19, 2018, 2:28 pm

CARNOUSTIE, Scotland – Pat Perez didn’t even attempt to hide his frustration with the USGA at last month’s U.S. Open, and after an opening-round 69 at The Open, he took the opportunity to double down on his displeasure.

“They (the R&A) do it right, not like the USGA,” Perez said of the setup at Carnoustie. “They've got the opposite [philosophy] here. I told them, you guys have it right, let the course get baked, but you've got the greens receptive. They're not going to run and be out of control. They could have easily had the greens just like the fairway, but they didn't. The course is just set up perfect.”

Full-field scores from the 147th Open Championship

Full coverage of the 147th Open Championship

Concerns at Shinnecock Hills reached a crescendo on Saturday when the scoring average ballooned to 75.3 and only three players broke the par of 70. Of particular concern for many players, including Perez, were some of the hole locations, given how fast and firm the greens were.

“The U.S. Open could have been like this more if they wanted to. They could have made the greens a bit more receptive,” Perez said. “These greens are really flat compared to Shinnecock. So that was kind of the problem there is they let it get out of control and they made the greens too hard.”