Snedeker to the lead, Tiger mak­ing move at Masters

The Covington News - - Sports - By Paul New­berry

AU­GUSTA— Brandt Snedeker was the sur­pris­ing Masters leader and TigerWoods climbed into con­tention Satur­day, de­spite squan­der­ing nu­mer­ous chances to move even closer to the top at damp Au­gusta Na­tional.

Try­ing to over­come a daunt­ing seven-shot deficit at the start of the third round, Woods knocked three strokes off the gap through 17 holes, cer­tainly mak­ing those ahead of him — in­clud­ing Snedeker and 36-hole leader Trevor Im­mel­man — a lit­tle ner­vous.

Imag­ine ifWoods had made a few putts.

Af­ter rolling in a 25-footer for birdie at No. 2, he be­gan a stretch of four straight holes with birdie tries of no more than 15 feet start­ing at the fifth. He missed them all, in­clud­ing a 6-footer at No. 8. Then, af­ter a nifty bunker shot stopped 8 feet past the hole at the par-5 15th, Woods rolled his putt left of the cup.

Smil­ing all the way around the front nine, Snedeker claimed the top spot all to him­self when Im­mel­man made a bo­gey at No. 4. The for­mer U.S. Ama­teur Pub­lic Links cham­pion birdied the two par 5s on the front, parred ev­ery­thing else and was at 9 un­der mak­ing the turn.

One shot back was Im­mel­man, who came into the day lead­ing by that mar­gin. He shot 36 on the front side.

Paul Casey made the turn at 32 and briefly pulled into a tie for the lead, but he dropped back to 7 un­der with a his first bo­gey of the day at No. 11.

Phil Mick­el­son, try­ing to win his third green jacket in five years, made a birdie at No. 2

to get within two strokes of the lead, but faded with a stretch of three bo­geys in five holes. Lefty got a bad break at the par5 eighth, hit­ting the flag­stick with a shot that likely would have given him an easy birdie at­tempt; the ball ric­o­cheted back to­ward the front of the green and he wound up three-putting.

Flesch, who joined Mick­el­son in an all-lefty two­some, birdied two of the first four holes at was at 7 un­der through 10.

Then there’s Woods, who hopes to get started on an un­prece­dented Grand Slam. He pulled within four strokes of Snedeker with a tap-in birdie at No. 17, the ball nearly go­ing in the hole for ea­gle.

De­fend­ing Masters cham­pion Zach John­son bol­stered his faint hopes of win­ning a sec­ond straight green jacket by shoot­ing a 4-un­der 68, bring­ing his three-round to­tal to a 2-un­der 214.

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