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2014 Charles Schwab Cup Championship 3rd Round Report

Third-Round Notes – Saturday, November 1, 2014, Scottsdale, AZ , October 30-November 2, 2014; Purse: $2,500,000;($440,000/880 Charles Schwab Cup points to the winner); Desert Mountain Club (Cochise), Par/Yards: 35-35–70/6,929

Weather: Partly cloudy with highs in the mid-70s and winds from the SSW at 10-15 mph.  

Third-Round Leaderboard:

Player

Score

Position

Charles Schwab Cup Position

Tom Pernice, Jr.

65-67-70–202 (-8)

T1

No. 9—1,012 points

Kenny Perry

66-68-68–202 (-8)

No. 4—1,633 points

Jay Haas (pictured by Getty Images)

66-62-75–203 (-7)

3

No. 3—1,883 points

Fred Couples

71-64-69–204 (-6)

T4

No. 7—1,119 points

Colin Montgomerie

69-66-66–204 (-6)

T4

No. 2—2,991 points

Round 3 Recap:

Kenny Perry and Tom Pernice, Jr. both birdied the last hole to move into a tie for the lead after three rounds of the 25th Charles Schwab Cup Championship. Perry’s birdie on No. 18 allowed him to shoot 2-under 68, his third straight round in the 60s this week. Pernice, the first-round leader in the event, used his birdie at the 18th to post an even-par 70 and like Perry, both players stand at 8-under after the third day of the 72-hole event. Second-round leader Jay Haas struggled to a 5-over 75, a 13-stroke swing from yesterday, but his birdie at the last hole positioned him just one stroke off the lead.

Tom Pernice, Jr. (-8):

Making his fourth career appearance in the Charles Schwab Cup Championship this week and best tournament finish is a T5 in 2010. Did not play at Desert Mountain in 2012.

Holds a share of a 54-hole lead in a 72-hole Champions Tour event for the first time in his career. Pernice has had sole possession of a Saturday  lead on two previous occasions on the Champions Tour and won both times.

Pernice is bidding to become the seventh multiple winner on the 2014 Champions Tour – Bernhard Langer (5), Colin Montgomerie (2), Kenny Perry (2), Fred Couples (2), Kirk Triplett (2) and Michael Allen (2). Earlier this year, defeated Doug Garwood in a playoff to win The Principal Charity Classic for his third career victory on the Champions Tour.

Pernice won twice on the PGA TOUR – 1999 Buick Open. 2001 The INTERNATIONAL Presented By Qwest.

Kenny Perry (-8):

Making his fourth appearance in the Charles Schwab Cup Championship and was T5 last year, his best effort in the event.

Is in position to win a fourth 72-hole event in his Champions Tour career and eighth overall title on the Champions Tour. Earlier this year, Perry won a third consecutive major championship at the Regions Tradition. In the summer of 2013, he won the Constellation SENIOR PLAYERS Championship and U.S. Senior Open in consecutive weeks. Perry joined Gary Player as the only player in Champions Tour history to win three consecutive majors.

Perry is hoping to win a third tournament in 2014 and become a three-time winner on the Champions Tour for the second consecutive year. In addition to his Regions Tradition victory, Perry also won the 3M Championship.

Was the Champions Tour’s Player of the Year last year and also won the Charles Schwab Cup.

Is bidding to become the fourth player to win both the Charles Schwab Cup and the Charles Schwab Cup Championship in his career.

Here are the other three who have done it:

Player:          Charles Schwab Cup:  Charles Schwab Cup Championship:

Hale Irwin       2002, 2004                     1998

Tom Watson  2003, 2005                      2000, 2002, 2005

Tom Lehman  2011, 2012                      2012

Won 14 times on the PGA TOUR, including the 2009 FBR Open at TPC Scottsdale.

If he wins tomorrow, Perry would join Tom Lehman, the 2000 Phoenix Open winner at TPC Scottsdale and 2012 Charles Schwab Cup winner at Desert Mountain, as winners of PGA TOUR and Champions Tour events in the Phoenix area.

Perry’s record when leading/sharing a 54-hole lead in a 72-hole Champions Tour event is 1 of 2. His overall Champions Tour record with at least a share of a Saturday lead is 5 of 7.

Championship Notes:

For the first time since the 2002 Charles Schwab Cup Championship, two players are tied for the 54-hole lead. Gil Morgan and Tom Watson were tied at 9-under at Gaillardia G&CC near Oklahoma City and Watson eventually won by two strokes.

Tom Pernice, Jr.’s and Kenny Perry’s three-round total of 8-under 202 is the highest in relation to par at the Charles Schwab Cup Championship since 2011 when Jay Don Blake was at 8-under 205 at TPC Harding Park, two strokes ahead of three players. He eventually went on to win.

Just three players (Kenny Perry, Marco Dawson and Gene Sauers) have three rounds in the 60s on the Cochise Course at Desert Mountain this year. Since the tournament became a 72-hole affair in 1994, only 14 players have posted four straight rounds in the 60s with Fred Couples being the only one to do so last year at TPC Harding Park. Four professionals did so at Desert Mountain two years ago. Overall, six of the 14 players with four straight sub-70 rounds have gone on to win the event – Jim Thorpe (2007), Andy Bean (2008), John Cook (2009, 2010), Tom Lehman (2012) and Fred Couples (2013).

One day after Jay Haas set the record for most  par/better rounds at 38 straight, his run was stopped after he shot a 5-over 75 today. It was Haas’ highest score of the year and his first round over par since shooting a 1-over 73 on Saturday at the Regions Tradition over six months ago. Yesterday, Haas eclipsed Loren Roberts’ all-time record streak of 37 par/better scores in a row set in 2006-2007. Haas’ streak of 28 consecutive sub-par rounds also ended today.

Since the Charles Schwab Cup Championship became a 72-hole event, eight of 20 leaders/co-leaders have gone on to win the event. The last to do so was Fred Couples in 2013 when he led Peter Senior by two strokes after two rounds at TPC Harding Park in San Francisco.

On the 2014 Champions Tour, four of the previous five 54-hole leaders have gone on to win. The lone exception was Gene Sauers who led the U.S. Senior Open after three rounds but eventually lost in a playoff to Colin Montgomerie at Oak Tree Golf Club this summer.

In the previous 24 Charles Schwab Cup Championships, players leading or tied for the lead heading into the final round have gone on to win the tournament 14 times, including each of the last three years. During the years from 1990-1993 (54-hole event), Saturday leaders/co-leaders went on to win three of the four events. Since going to 72 holes in 1994, players who led or shared the lead after 54 holes went on to win 11 of 20 tournaments, including eight of the last 12 winners – Tom Watson (2002), Jim Thorpe (2003/2006), Andy Bean (2008), John Cook (2009), Jay Don Blake (2011), Tom Lehman (2012) and Fred Couples (2013). The winner of the Charles Schwab Cup Championship has also come from the last group in the last six years.

With Bernhard Langer having clinched the Charles Schwab Cup last week, he’s now attempting to surpass Hale Irwin’s single-season earnings record ($3,028,304 in 2002). If the Charles Schwab Cup Championship ended today, here’s the projected final 2014 money totals:

                     Player

2014 money total/rank coming into the Charles Schwab Cup Championship

Projected final 2014 official money total/rank

Bernhard Langer

$2,916,189/1st

1st/$2,989,189

Colin Montgomerie

$1,906,381/2nd

2nd/$2,064,381

Jay Haas

$1,685,974/3rd

2nd/$1,898,974

Here is how the course has played in the two years it has been held at the Cochise Course:

Year

2012

2014

1st Round Scoring Average

69.133

69.800

Sub-Par Rounds

18

14

2nd  Round Scoring Average

67.833

68.800

Sub-Par Rds./Rds. in 60s

18

14

3rd-Round Scoring Average

68.833

70.033

Sub-Par Rds./Rds. In 60s

18

12

Three-Round Average

68.600

69.544

The par-4 4th hole has played as the most difficult through the first three rounds (4.256), yielding just four birdies. The par-5 18th has played as the easiest over the first 54 holes (4.522), yielding one eagle and 45 birdies. Just three eagles have been made in the tournament and Esteban Toledo made two of them in the last four holes today (15th/18th).

Here’s how the four players in the field with ties to the Phoenix/Scottsdale area are doing after 54 holes:

Kenny Perry – (2009 FBR Open winner) – 66-68-68–202 (-8/T1)
Michael Allen (Scottsdale) – 69-66-70-205 (-5/T6)
Tom Lehman (Scottsdale) – 71-70-67–208 (-2/T13)
Kirk Triplett (Scottsdale) – 69-71-74–214 (+4/27th)

Defending champion Fred Couples carded a 69 and is now T4, just two strokes off the lead. He’s in position to repeat at the Charles Schwab Cup Championship. Mike Hills (1990, 1991), Jim Thorpe (2006, 2007) and John Cook (2009, 2010) are the only other players to win consecutive titles at the season-ending event.

Source: PGA TOUR

Author

Graham J Gordon, The Editor and Owner, GolfblogspotUK

The GolfblogspotUK website is owned and run by former Walker Cup player and European Tour card holder, Graham J Gordon, from Scotland, the Home of Golf. The owner is a golf fanatic who had to retire early from competitive tour play due to a back injury that required surgery. Graham wishes to share his knowledge and own experiences of the game with the GolfblogspotUK community and to receive your feedback on all aspects of the sport. Graham has been playing the game for over 20 years and received a great deal of pleasure from the sport. He has met several friends and visited many different places around the world, thanks to playing the great game of golf. Time to put a little back into the game to help others.

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