Nicolas Thompson has a share of the 54-hole lead at Annandale. (Revere/Getty Images)
By Rusty Hampton, special to PGATOUR.COM
MADISON, Miss. – Only two brother-sister combos have won events on the PGA TOUR and LPGA Tour.
Nicholas Thompson would like to make that three.
Thompson fired a third-round 7-under 65 Saturday to take a share of the lead going into Sunday’s final round of the storm-plagued Sanderson Farms Championship at Annandale Golf Club. If he claims his first PGA TOUR victory here, Thompson would join his sister, Lexi, in the winner’s circle on golf’s biggest stages.
The only other brother-sister combo with wins: Billy Kratzert and his sister Cathy Gehring, and Jim Gallagher Jr., and Jackie Gallagher-Smith.
“Hopefully it’ll be a great day for the Thompson family,” said Nicholas Thompson, whose sister is also in contention in this weekend’s Marathon Classic on the LPGA Tour.
Thompson stands at 17 under, and is tied with first- and second-round leader Daniel Summerhays, two ahead of Chad Campbell (65), Cameron Beckman (65), Kyle Reifers (65) and Woody Austin (67).
Summerhays was one back and looking at a 19-foot birdie putt on the par-5 18th when play was suspended once again due to inclement weather, but returned to the course nearly an hour later to roll home his birdie bid and earn a share of the lead.
Play has been stopped or delayed each day because of rain, lightning or both. Tournament officials said Sunday’s final round will begin earlier than scheduled, at 8 a.m., with threesomes going off the first and tenth tees, in an effort to finish before storms that are forecast for Sunday afternoon.
Scott Stallings set the Annandale 72-hole scoring record last year at 24-under 264. That might be challenged Sunday if the weather holds.
“I don’t know what score it’s going to take, but it’s going to be a good one, regardless,” said Thompson. “Guys have gone low and the golf course is in perfect condition.”
Austin, a three-time winner PGA TOUR winner, is chasing his first title since 2007. The 49-year-old has played only three PGA TOUR events this year, missing the cut in each, and he’s made four of 10 cuts on the Web.com Tour. So the oft-animated Austin didn’t have big expectations coming in.
“Normally, I’d say I’m pretty happy,” said Austin, “but to finish the way I did was very disappointing.”
After getting to 17 under, Austin bogeyed two of his final five holes, including the par-5 18th, one of the easiest holes on the course.
“My ballstriking has been pretty good, but it’s going to be hard to get rid of that last hole,” Austin said. “Five to 10 guys are going to shoot low tomorrow. I didn’t need to throw away two shots like I did.”
Weather continues to plague the Sanderson Farms Championship. The good news is, the third round is nearly complete.
With just one group left on the golf course, play was halted at 7:11 p.m. ET due to dangerous weather in the area. Officials are hopeful they'll be able to resume play and finish the round.
Nicholas Thompson has a one-shot lead at 17 under after a third-round 65.
Daniel Summerhays is a stroke back and was on the 18th hole when the horn sounded. Four others are another shot back at 15 under.
Summerhays is in contention for the second straight week. (Revere/Getty Images)
By Rusty Hampton, Special to PGATOUR.COM
MADISON, Miss. -- Daniel Summerhays is back in a familiar position as the search for his first PGA TOUR win continues: Leading on the weekend.
Summerhays, who led after the third round of last week’s John Deere Classic, will hold a four-shot lead when he tees off later Saturday in the third round of the Sanderson Farms Championship. Summerhays finished his second round of the storm-plagued event Saturday morning, firing a 5-under 67 to get to 14 under. He leads over 10 players who have finished their second rounds.
Among those tied at 10 under are former Ryder Cupper Vaughn Taylor, Billy Mayfair, Peter Lonard and Chris Kirk, the 2011 winner of this event.
Storms delayed Thursday’s opening round to a Friday finish, and a lightning delay Friday afternoon forced a Saturday finish for 59 players in Round 2.
The third round is scheduled to begin at about 12:20 p.m. ET with the leaders set to go off at about 2:20 p.m. They’ll go in threesomes off both tees.
Summerhays, 29, had a chance to pocket his first TOUR win last week at TPC Deere Run. He led by two going into Sunday, lost the lead with four bogeys on the front, then got back into contention with four birdies on the back. He was tied for the lead going to 18 but bogeyed and missed out on a three-man playoff that was won by 19-year-old Jordan Speith.
If last Sunday was a learning experience for the sixth-year pro from Utah, this week has been another one. He breezed through his opening round Thursday morning, firing a bogey-free 9-under 63 to set the early pace, but Friday was a different story. He hit his opening tee shot into trees, punched out -- then the horn sounded. Two hours later, he returned to make his first bogey of the week. He played until dark, then returned Saturday morning to another shot from the trees, this time a 9-iron from 155 yards that he hooked onto the ninth green, 8 feet from the pin. His birdie try lipped out, but he played the back nine in 4 under to increase his lead by four going into Round 3.
Between rounds, he said, he’ll change into some gym shorts and a t-shirt and relax.
“This week has been a little bit strange,” said Summerhays of the stop-and-go-and-stop tournament. “I’ve had a little more time to sit and think about it, so I’ve made myself a little more nervous, thinking I should shoot 63 every round, but I think today playing 10 holes in a roll it was nice to get into a better rhythm. Now I’m looking forward to this afternoon and hopefully the weather will hold off for us.”
The second-round 67 means Summerhays has now played his last 10 rounds in 40 under.
“Right now,” he said, “It feels like mechanically, mentally, emotionally, I’m in a good spot. Hopefully I can keep riding the wave out.”
By Rusty Hampton, Special to PGATOUR.COM
MADISON, Miss. – Five players were in the clubhouse tied for the lead and four more were one shot back Friday when darkness brought a halt to the second round of the storm-plagued Sanderson Farms Championship.
Fifty-nine players, including first-round leader Daniel Summerhays, were still on the course when play was stopped at Annandale Golf Club. They will complete their second rounds Saturday, beginning at 7 a.m. local time.
Vaughn Taylor (67-67), Fabian Gomez (70-64), Paul Stankowski (66-68), Troy Matteson (67-67) and Kyle Reifers (65-69) finished their second rounds and were tied at 10 under.
Summerhays, who fired a bogey-free 9-under 63 Thursday morning, bogeyed his first hole Friday afternoon but recovered to get to 10 under through eight holes when play was stopped.
Storms that drenched the course on Thursday threw the tournament off schedule. A two-hour lightning delay on Friday added to the trouble. Some players were forced to play as many as 36 holes on Friday. Many others played extra holes on another steamy, 90-degree day.
Stankowski, a two-time TOUR winner in the 1990s who has struggled the last six years, played 30 holes Friday. Asked about his day, he had two answers.
“Well, it was long,” he said. “And it was hot. But it was a good day.”
It was that way for a lot of guys.
With the lift, clean and place rule in effect for the second round, players took dead aim at the rain-softened greens. Ryder Cup captain Davis Love III made his share of birdies, five each round, but ran into so much trouble on two holes that he stands at just 3 under (71-70) heading into the third round.
Love made triple bogeys on the easiest (par-5 fifth) and most difficult (par-4 14th) holes, but hung in there and stuck his second shot on the par-4 ninth (his final hole) to 3 feet and rolled in the birdie putt to reach 3 under -- right on the projected cut line heading into Saturday.
The second round of the Sanderson Farms Championship has resumed after a second weather delay in as many days.
Four players are currently tied for the lead at 10 under with another four one stroke back.
Because of the lengthy delays, the second round won't be completed on Friday and players will have to return to the course on Saturday morning to complete the second round.
By Rusty Hampton, Special to PGATOUR.COM
MADISON, Miss. – It was brutally hot for everyone at Annandale Golf Club Friday for the rain-plagued Sanderson Farms Championship, but it’s a safe bet no player was hotter on the course than Cameron Beckman.
Beckman, who won this tournament in 2001, played seven holes in Thursday’s opening round before storms stopped play. When the round was resumed Friday morning, he was 3 over par and facing a 60-foot birdie putt on the par-3 eighth hole.
When his second round was finished Friday afternoon, he was 8 under, two shots off the lead, and feeling a heck of a lot better than he was some 10 hours earlier.
“It was crazy,” said Beckman, 43. “Starting the day 3 over, then this? Are you kidding me?”
Beckman sits at 8 under despite two bogeys on the easiest hole on the course, the short, downhill par-5 fifth. Where he did his scoring, instead, was on the back nine, playing it in 9 under.
He holed a wedge from 115 yards for eagle on the par-5 11th in the first round, then birdied six of the nine holes on the back in Round 2, firing the low round of the day this point, an 8-under 64.
Beckman won the Southern Farm Bureau Classic here in 2001. He’s played the event 12 times, making the cut each time.
“This is one of my favorite tournaments,” said Beckman. “Especially since 2001, but even before then. There’s just something about this place. I feel like I can shoot good scores here.”