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August 10 2013

8:00 PM

Scott hopeful despite 'mental error'

Scott shot a 2-over 72 Saturday at Oak Hill. (Lecka/Getty Images)

By Brian Wacker, PGATOUR.COM

PITTSFORD, N.Y. -- For the better part of three days, Adam Scott had done little wrong at Oak Hill.

Then came the 16th hole late Saturday afternoon.

He missed the fairway off the tee then missed the green on his approach, leaving his golf ball buried in the thick rough short of the green, then left it in the rough again. The Aussie finally pitched on then proceeded to two-putt for double bogey.

"I was grinding hard, unfortunately," Scott said. "I bit off more than I could chew at 16 and made a bad mental error. It wasn't really going my way out there with much today."

Scott managed to save par "out of nowhere" from 15 feet on the next hole, though, and finished with another one to shoot a 2-over 72 that leaves him at 5 under for the week and still within a sniff of Jim Furyk, who is four shots ahead of him.

Considering Scott's 32 putts, the deficit could have been a lot worse.

He birdied his opening hole and looked as though he might sprint from the field, only to trip himself up with bogeys on each of his next two.

Though Scott hit 10 of his next 12 greens in regulation, he either didn't give himself good looks at birdie or simply missed his chances most of the day.

His only other birdie came on the 318-yard par-4 14th, where he blasted a drive clean off the tee and onto the green. He had a 25-foot eagle putt to tie for the lead but instead two-putted.

Two holes later the deficit only grew.

Unlike in the past, however, Scott is feeling good about his game and his chances and with good reason. He won the Masters in a playoff in April and had the lead late on Sunday of The Open Championship.

"Four back is well within reach," he said. "(Phil) Mickelson ended up winning the Open by quite easily being four back. Anything can happen in a major.

"I don't think there is any pressure on me going into tomorrow at all. It's a different story if you are leading or close to it."

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