By Fred Albers, PGA TOUR.COM Correspondent
NORTON, Mass. -- Tiger Woods let the scoring portion of the golf course get away from him on Sunday. He had played the first four holes in 5 under during the first two rounds, but Sunday played them in even par. The 5 he made at the par-5 second hole was particularly frustrating. Woods hit a 330 yard drive, leaving him just 179 yards for his second shot and he blocked an 8-iron to the right, barely avoiding the hazard. Woods appeared to attempt to hit few draws the remainder of the round.
Pepsi please: Keegan Bradley barely made the cut but went out early and shoot 63 on Sunday. What was the difference? Steve “Pepsi” Hale was back on the bag. Hale missed the first two rounds attending to a family emergency. The Bradley/Hale team was back together for the third round and the comfort level was evident on the course and on the scoreboard.
Opening act: The first hole is the shortest par 4 on the course, measuring just 375 yards and yet it gave up just a dozen birdies in the third round. The hole was cut 28 paces on the green and nine from the left edge, but that location sits right on top of a ridge and anything to the left of the flagstick released off the green. It played to a stroke average of 4.038 and prevented some players from getting off to the customary quick start in their rounds. Ian Poulter was among the victims -- he carded a triple-bogey 7 that started a spiral toward a round of 75.
Going low: When Louis Oosthuizen was ripping off his run of seven straight birdies, he wasn’t thinking about shooting 59 -- he had 57 in his sights. The 2010 British Open champion once shot 57 while playing in South Africa and thought he could match that score. It did not materialize, but it’s nice to know Oosthuizen has lofty goals.
Injured: Oosthuizen felt a little tug in his right pectoral muscle while hitting a 9-iron on the 15 th hole. He felt it again on the final three holes. The South African says he will get treatment but does not think it will be a problem in the final round.
Congratulations: It’s tough to watch someone make seven straight birdies, but Rory McIlroy seemed to enjoy the show. In fact when Oosthuizen finally missed his birdie putt on the 11 th green to snap his run of seven in a row, McIlroy greeted him with a high-five and a hug. The two walked off the green arm in arm with huge smiles.
Fred Albers is a course reporter for SiriusXM PGA TOUR Radio. For more information on SiriusXM PGA TOUR Radio, click here .
In the third round of the 2012 Deutsche Bank Championship, Louis Oosthuizen hits his 70-yard third shot on the par-5 18th hole to 11 feet and makes the birdie putt.
For the second straight day, he will be paired in the final group with Rory McIlroy, his closest pursuer.
Oosthuizen shot a 8-under 63 in which he did most of his damage on the first 10 holes. Oosthuizen shot a tournament-record 7-under 29 on the front nine, then birdied the 10th to go 8 under on his round.
“Obviously, probably the start anyone would dream of,” Oosthuizen said. “I made everything. You get these days where you just look at a putt and hole it.”
“Louis put on a display right there,” McIlroy said. “I was delighted when I got the honor back on the 12th tee.”
Oosthuizen said it crossed his mind after 10 holes that he was in a position to shoot 59. “I gave myself good chances to post that number,” he said.
But from there, Oosthuizen’s putter cooled off. He continued striking the ball well, but had to settle for a series of pars until a bogey at the 17th. He bounced back with birdie at the par-5 18th to finish at 19 under through the first three days.
His total of 194 also sets a tournament record, as does the seven consecutive birdies he made between hole Nos. 4-10. He’ll be looking for his first PGA TOUR win since romping to victory at the 2010 British Open.
McIlroy, the 36-hole leader, shot a 4-under 67 to move to 16 under.
“I’ve come from farther behind before,” McIlroy said. “It’s going to be an interesting day tomorrow.”
Dustin Johnson and Tiger Woods are tied for third, but well off the pace at 13 under.
In the third round of the 2012 Deutsche Bank Championship, Tiger Woods hits his tee shot to 6 feet on the 146 yard, par-3 16th hole and sinks the birdie putt.
Woods is tied for third with Dustin Johnson; the two will be paired together in Monday’s final round as they try to chase down leader Louis Oosthuizen, who is at 19 under.
“Obviously I need to put together a really nice round tomorrow,” Woods said.
Woods shot a bogey-free 2 under on his front nine, suffered his lone bogey at the par-3 11th, then birdied the 15th and 16th holes.
But for the second straight day, he birdied just one of the three par 5s at TPC Boston.
“I had some looks today,” Woods said. “I hit the ball well again today and just didn’t make as many putts as I did the first day (when he shot 64).
“With the conditions like this, we’re going to have to shoot some good numbers. It’s definitely gettable.”
Woods said he will need the kind of round on Monday that Oosthuizen shot on Sunday, an 8-under 63.
“It won’t surprise me if somebody shoots 8- or 9-under par tomorrow because of where the pin locations are,” he said. “Somebody is going to go out there and do it. It may be early; it may be late. Who knows, but hopefully I am one of those guys.”
NORTON, Mass. – After his blistering pace through the first 10 holes, Louis Oosthuizen has settled for pars in his last six holes.
Oosthuizen remains at 8 under for his round with two holes left to play. He’s at 19 under for the tournament, four shots ahead of his playing partner, Rory McIlroy.
Oosthuizen birdied eight of his first 10 holes, but his putter has cooled off on the back nine.
Meanwhile, McIlroy has clawed back with three birdies (and a bogey) in his last six holes. McIlroy is 3 under for his round.
As for Tiger Woods, he also is 3 under on his round and 13 under for the tournament as he plays the 17th hole. That puts him in a tie for third with Dustin Johnson, who’s in the clubhouse after shooting 65.
NORTON, Mass. -- Webb Simpson just wanted to get some confidence back after missing the cut last week at The Barclays.
And that's exactly what he did with Sunday’s 66 that moved him to 8 under with one round remaining in his title defense at the Deutsche Bank Championship. Simpson is still well off the torrid pace being set by Louis Oosthuizen but at least he's gaining ground.
"I knew those guys are playing so well it's going to be a tough task, but I just wanted to come out and play a good solid day of golf and draw on some confidence for next week," Simpson said. "Last year I was pacing, I didn't try to press. That's what I've got to do tomorrow. Whether the winner shoots 23 or 24 under or 16, I've got to go out and do the same thing."
Simpson didn't make a bogey on Sunday -- and neither did his playing partner, Brandt Snedeker, who shot 65.
The former Wake Forest All-American did have an unusual double bogey on Saturday, though. He had to take a penalty stroke at the eighth hole when he inadvertently struck the ball with his putter as he tried to swat a bee away after he set up over a bogey putt.
"It looked like it was going to sting me so I swatted it and my putter hit the ball," Simpson said. "... I think it's a bad rule. it was unintentional that I was going to hit it. I think there needs to be more of a judgment in golf, intention-based. Obviously, my intention was not to move the ball. I had a bee coming."
NORTON, Mass. – Dustin Johnson is among the TOUR’s longest hitters. In Sunday’s third round of the Deutsche Bank Championship, he was also among the most accurate.
“When I can drive it straight, golf’s always fun,” Johnson said. “Playing from the fairway is a lot nicer than playing from the rough.”
Johnson birdied two of his first four holes before a stumble at the sixth. But he bounced back with three birdies in his next four holes and kept it rolling from there.
Along with his accurate drives, Johnson was also pleased with his putting. In his last 10 holes, he had seven one-putts and made all five of his putts from 7 to 10 feet.
“I rolled the putter well and got a lot of good reads,” Johnson said.
NORTON, Mass. – What a front nine for Louis Oosthuizen.
The South African shot a stunning 7-under 29 on his first nine holes in Sunday’s third round at the Deutsche Bank Championship. He made the turn riding a streak of six consecutive birdies.
The 29 is a record-low for the front nine at TPC Boston.
Suffice to say, Oosthuizen has a commanding lead. He’s at 18 under, five strokes ahead of Dustin Johnson and Rory McIlroy, who are tied for second.
Oosthuizen has rolled in four putts from 20 feet or longer, including a 42-footer at the par-3 eighth and a 23-footer at the par-4 ninth.
In addition, he’s hit all nine greens in regulation.
UPDATE (4:08 p.m. ET): Oosthuizen makes it seven straight birdies, thanks to a terrific approach at the par-4 10th. He’s now 8 under on his round through 10 holes and chasing perhaps not only the course record of 61 but a chance at 59.
The seven consecutve birdies is a tournament record.
UPDATE (4:16 p.m. ET): The birdie streak is over. Oosthuizen couldn’t roll in his birdie putt from 21 feet, 11 inches on the par-3 11th and settled for par to remain 19 under.
Meanwhile, playing partner Rory McIlroy made birdie and is now the closest pursuer at 14 under.
For Oosthuizen to shoot 59, he’ll need four birdies in his remaining seven holes. He only has one par-5 left, at the 18th.
TOUR pro @ArronOberholser tweeted: “Louis is in the most ridiculous zone I have ever seen. He is hovering above his own body watching himself play golf. #awesome”
OOSTHUIZEN’S BIRDIE BINGE
A look at the eight birdies in Louis Oosthuizen’s first 10 holes on Sunday at TPC Boston
|Par-5 2nd||Laid up with 2nd shot; wedge to 1 feet, 3 inches; made birdie putt|
|Par-4 4th||Second shot from 64 feet to 6 feet, 9 inches; made birdie putt|
|Par-4 5th||Second shot to 20 feet; made birdie putt||Click to watch|
|Par-4 6th||Second shot to 20 feet, 4 inches; made birdie putt||Click to watch|
|Par-5 7th||Made birdie putt from 4 feet, 10 inches|
|Par-3 8th||Tee shot to 41 feet, 9 inches; made birdie putt||Click to watch|
|Par-4 9th||Second shot to 23 feet, 2 inches; made birdie putt||Click to watch|
|Par-4 10th||Second shot to 2 feet, 1 inch; made birdie putt||Click to watch|
In the third round of the Deutsche Bank Championship, Jason Dufner makes a 39-foot putt from just off the green on the par-4 4th hole for an eagle.
NORTON, Mass. – Louis Oosthuizen has overtaken Rory McIlroy for the lead through their first six holes in Sunday’s third round of the Deutsche Bank Championship. But a few big names are lurking close behind.
Oosthuizen, reeling off three consecutive birdies, is 15 under while McIlroy, who opened with birdies on his first two holes, is 14 under.
Dustin Johnson, who has won at least one FedExCup Playoffs event in each of the previous two years, is 4 under on his round through 11 holes and is at 11 under.
That ties him with Tiger Woods, who is 1 under on his round.
Jason Dufner, making his 2012 Playoffs debut this week, is at 10 under.
Phil Mickelson has steadily moved up the leaderboard and is now has joined a group tied for sixth at 9 under.
Defending champion Webb Simpson is 5 under on his round as he plays the 18th hole and is in a group at 8 under.
UPDATE (3:33 p.m. ET): Oosthuizen now has a three-shot lead through seven holes. He posted his fourth consecutive birdie at the par-5 seventh while McIlroy dropped a stroke, his second bogey on a par 5 this week. Oosthuizen is at 16 under, with McIlroy at 13 under.
UPDATE (3:40 p.m.): Make it five straight birdies for Oosthuizen, who just rolled in a putt from 41 feet, 9 inches at the par-3 eighth. That moves him to 17 under and holding a four-shot lead over McIlroy.
Oosthuizen has hit every green in regulation thus far on Sunday.
In the third round of the Deutsche Bank Championship, Rory McIlroy hits his 124-yard approach shot to 4 feet on the par-4 1st hole and makes the putt for birdie.