LAKE BUENA VISTA, Calif. -- After briefly losing his lead with two early bogeys, Charlie Beljan is back atop the leaderboard at the Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals Classic, where he’s tied with Scott Stallings and Matt Jones at 11 under.
Meanwhile, four others are a stroke back, including Camilo Villegas, who came into the week 150th on the money list and in danger of losing his card.
Four others, including Charles Howell III, who has a pair of career top-10 finishes here, are at 9 under.
Beljan, who spent the night in the hospital with what may have been an anxiety attack, three-putted two of his first three holes before bouncing back with a birdie on the par-5 fourth.
Prior to the third round of the 2012 Children's Miracle Network Hospitals Classic, Dennis Paulson from SiriusXM PGA TOUR Radio speaks with 36-hole leader Charlie Beljan about his health and mindset.
By Brian Wacker, PGATOUR.COM
LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. -- Despite a recommendation by doctors that Charlie Beljan not continue to play, he will go on in the Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals Classic, where he leads by three going into Saturday’s third round.
Beljan spent the night at nearby Celebration Hospital after suffering from shortness of breath, an increased heart rate and high blood pressure. After several tests, however, doctors couldn’t find anything physically wrong with the 28-year-old, who was released Saturday morning.
“That was probably the hardest day of my life,” said Beljan, who got only an hour of sleep and actually slept with his golf shoes on. “The end result was that they think that everything was OK. That's why I'm here today.
”I’m still not feeling that great, but shoot, the position I'm in, it's kind of hard not to show up. We'll give it a whirl, give it our best shot.”
Beljan, who believes he may have suffered an anxiety attack, shot a 64 on Friday despite gasping for air and having to lay down on the course several times during his round. Once he signed his scorecard, he was rushed by ambulance to the hospital.
By Saturday morning, Beljan was ready to play golf after getting to the course about an hour before his 10:55 a.m. ET tee time.
“Blood work, the CAT scan, the lungs, the heart, everything was wonderful, which is a huge relief,” Beljan said. “Still, I'm going to have to go back out there and kind of face the feelings today.
”They released me saying that they thought I was good enough maybe not to go play golf, but at least to leave the hospital. I'm making the decision to come out here and play. Who knows if we'll last two holes. Who knows if we'll last 18 holes. We're just going to take it one shot at a time, which I did yesterday and ended up pretty good.”
Beljan said on Friday that he has suffered similar episodes in recent weeks, but nothing this extreme. And last month, he passed out on a flight home from Reno, Nev., and had to be taken to the hospital once the plane landed. Again, doctors weren’t able to come up with a diagnosis.
The rookie came into this week with the added stress of playing for his PGA TOUR card -- he is 139th on the money list; only the top 125 after this week receive cards.
Beljan, who was barely coherent after finishing his second round, didn’t even realize he was in the lead until he reached the hospital.
“I haven't even thought about the three-shot lead or the golf really,” he said. “My health is the No. 1 thing. Without that it's kind of hard to play golf. So I look forward to the opportunity and see what we can do with this.
“I look forward to having some fun today. And we'll see what happens. It's a dream come true.”
By Laura Hill, Senior Director of Communications, PGA TOUR
Mission Hills Shenzhen and Dongguan sprawl over 20 square kilometers, and together create the world's largest golf complex, as accredited by the Guinness World Records. So, you'd assume it's easy to get lost at the HSBC Champions this week.
But no need to leave a trail of bread crumbs to find your way. Just head toward the smell of freshly-brewed coffee and gather at the Starbucks, which opened just last weekend in the Mission Hills clubhouse and has served as the unofficial meeting spot throughout the week.
Players, caddies, tournament officials and fans mingle from sunup to sundown at the coffee shop, welcomed by a little slice of home in China -- no matter where in the world they hail. Phil Mickelson even stopped to grab a coffee on his way to the media center after the first round.
PGA TOUR, European Tour and Asian Tour media officials surveyed some of the players while they were in line. Here's what the world's best players usually ask for:
Phil Mickelson: Venti non-fat cappuccino
Luke Donald: Tall cappuccino
Prom Meesawat: Hot chocolate
Thaworn Wiratchant: Caramel frappuccino
Brandt Snedeker: I don't drink coffee!
Graeme McDowell: Soy latte
Lee Westwood: Skinny latte with one sugar
Louis Oosthuizen: Iced frappuccino
As an aside, the author of this TOUR Report note was very pleased to learn that the Chinese barista understood "Grande non-fat green tea latte with no syrup" perfectly...
Lee Westwood made 11 birdies to shoot an 11-under 61 to catch Louis Oosthuizen at the top of the leaderboard after 54 holes of the HSBC Champions on Saturday in Shenzhen, China. Oosthuizen, the 2010 British Open champion, held a five-stroke lead after 36 holes, but carded a 70 as his putting wasn't as sharp as in Round 2. Both players are at 18 under, three shots ahead of Phil Mickelson (66).
Watch Brandt Snedeker's impressive second shot on the par-5 15th en route to an eagle.
Phil Mickelson makes a birdie on the seventh hole at the HSBC Champions on Saturday.
Ernie Els climbs into contention with an eagle on the seventh hole on Saturday.
Brandt Snedeker talks about his near miss at a 59 in the third round of the HSBC Champions.