GOLF ROUNDUP : Pavin Leads by Four, but Azinger Steals the Show
Corey Pavin, seeking his second tour victory this season, shot a seven-under 65 to take a four-shot lead over first-round leader Fred Funk in the Buick Open in Grand Blanc, Mich., on Saturday.
Still, for the second day in a row, Pavin wasn’t even the most popular player in his threesome.
That honor went to Paul Azinger, playing in his first tournament since being diagnosed as having cancer last November.
Azinger continued his return with a 70 for a total of 146. He missed the cut, but it was clear Azinger’s game was coming back after a nine-month battle with illness.
And barely in time. Azinger will defend his PGA Championship title starting Thursday at Tulsa, Okla.
Azinger, followed hole to hole by an army of cheering fans, had consecutive birdies at Nos. 7, 8 and 9 to turn at two-under 34.
“It was a good feeling to whip a few in there,” Azinger said. “I could have had four birdies in a row, but I just couldn’t putt.”
Pavin was at 131. Funk shot a 70 for 135. Davis Love III was at 136 after rounds of 69 and 67, tied with Duffy Waldorf, who also shot 67 in the second round.
Carolyn Hill, whose best finish was a second place 13 years ago, shot a career-best 65 to take a two-shot lead at 206 in the McCall’s LPGA Classic at Stratton Mountain, Vt.
Hill’s 10-under-par 206 put her in front entering a final round for the first time since 1981.
“It’s a great feeling. I’m very excited,” she said.
Nancy Ramsbottom, one shot out of the lead starting the day, fell another stroke back but retained second place with a two-under 70 for 208.
Jim Albus shot a six-under 66 to take a three-stroke lead at 133 in the $750,000 Bank of Boston Senior PGA Classic at Concord, Mass.
Albus withstood the challenges of Raymond Floyd and Lee Trevino in building his lead.
Floyd shot a 67 and was at 136. Trevino also fired a 67 for a 137.
Darren Clarke of Northern Ireland had a four-under 68 to take a two-stroke lead at 204 in the BMW International Open at Munich.