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Campbell's 61 vaults him into Colonial lead

By wire services
Published May 23, 2004

FORT WORTH, Texas - Chad Campbell learned to play golf in windy conditions growing up in the flatlands of west Texas. So, 20-25 mph winds at the Colonial didn't even faze him.

Even with two bogeys, Campbell shot an early 9-under 61 Saturday and ended the third round tied for the lead with Brian Gay and Steve Flesch. He got to 8-under 202 after making the cut over par.

"If you're hitting the shots, if you're getting the ball in play and you feel good over your shots, it's not that tough," Campbell said. "But if you lose a little bit of confidence, those fairways become a lot smaller and they're harder to hit."

That's what happened to Gay.

Gay, whose runnerup finish at the 2001 Colonial matches his best on the PGA Tour, looked as if he would make a record run of his own. After six birdies in a seven-hole stretch, he had an 8-under round through 12 holes.

But Gay had bogeys on three of his last five holes, losing his chance at the record and sole possession of the lead. He still finished with a season-best 65.

"It's always hard to forget about coming backwards coming in," Gay said. "But I would have gladly taken 65 starting the day, so you have to feel good about that."

Campbell became the third golfer in two years to tie the course record. Before Kenny Perry and Justin Leonard carded 61 last year, there had been only three 61s in the first 56 Colonials. "Shooting 61 here with all the history and everything about (Ben) Hogan, and just the tradition, it doesn't get much better than that," Campbell said.

Zach Johnson (68) was two strokes behind the leaders at 6-under 204, a stroke better than Jesper Parnevik (68) and Craig Perks (70), the first-round leader whose only win came at the 2002 Players Championship.

Leonard, the second-round co-leader, shot 72 and was in a group of seven tied for seventh at 206. J.L. Lewis shot 75 and fell to 29th.

Phil Mickelson, the Masters champion who missed his first cut of the season last weekend, had three birdies his first six holes to get to 6 under. But he dropped back with three bogeys in four holes on the back side and shot 70.

LPGA: Sherri Steinhauer hit one of those shots that could turn around a career.

The 18-year veteran capped 5-under 66 with an eagle 3 and was tied with Becky Morgan for the lead after three rounds of the Sybase Classic in New Rochelle, N.Y. The leaders were at 10-under 203, three shots in front of Young-A Yang and Grace Park.

Steinhauer hit a 3-wood from 245 yards to 5 feet and made the putt to tie Morgan, the second-round leader who shot 1-over 71.

"It's been a long, long time," Steinhauer said of being in the lead late in a tournament.

CHAMPIONS TOUR: Playing in a tournament for the first time since October, Bobby Walzel shot 5-under 66 to pull within one shot of first-place D.A. Weibring in the Allianz Championship in West Des Moines, Iowa.

Less than two years ago, Walzel was recovering from prostate cancer surgery. He also has had two operations on his right knee and will need a third later this year.

Weibring, getting an early break when a 50-foot putt flopped into the hole, stayed on top with 68 that left him 9 under. Three Toms - Jenkins, Watson and Kite - were tied for third at 5 under.

EUROPEAN PGA: France's Gregory Havret shot 4-under-par 68 in the wind and chill, taking a two-stroke lead after three rounds at the Deutsche Bank Open in St. Leon-Rot, Germany. Havret was at 12-under 204.

Ireland's Padraig Harrington (68) and South Africa's Trevor Immelman (69) were at 206, with Northern Ireland's Darren Clarke (70) and Sweden's Joakim Haeggman (66) at 207.

[Last modified May 22, 2004, 23:37:24]

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