GOLF ROUNDUP : Irwin, 50, Shoots 63; Jimenez, 69, Has a 62
While Hale Irwin was on the verge of winning his first senior tournament, 69-year-old Joe Jimenez took center stage in the Ameritech Senior Open at Aurora, Ill.
Irwin, a rookie on the senior tour, shot a nine-under-par 63 on Saturday to take a five-stroke lead after the second round. Jimenez, in his final full season on the tour, broke the tournament record with a 62 on the Stonebridge Country Club course.
“That’s fantastic,” Irwin said of Jimenez.
“How the heck do you shoot 62 when you’re 69?” said Jim Colbert, who was tied for second with Kermit Zarley.
“Friday my wife was saying, ‘Every time you make a birdie, you bogey the next hole,’ ” Jimenez said. “I don’t think she’s saying that today.”
Irwin, playing his fifth tour event since turning 50 on June 3, opened with a six-under 66 on Friday and had a 15-under 129 total.
“I didn’t put a whole lot of pressure on myself,” Irwin said. “It wasn’t until I shot the 64 at the Players Championship that I got it all together.”
Colbert shot a 68 to tie with Zarley for second place. Zarley shot a 65.
Jimenez, who won the PGA Seniors Championship in 1978, was tied for fourth with Gibby Gilbert at eight-under 136. Gilbert shot a 68.
Fred Funk shot a five-under 66 and matched the lowest three-round score on the PGA Tour this year as he opened a four-stroke lead over Jim McGovern in the Ideon Classic at Sutton, Mass.
Funk added three strokes to his margin on the last four holes and was at 18-under 195 for 54 holes. Only Ernie Els and Jim Gallagher Jr. have done that this season.
Funk, who started the day with a three-stroke lead over McGovern, tapped in for a birdie at the 583-yard 18th hole. McGovern, in the same threesome, left a 10-foot putt short and settled for par and a four-under 67.
Kelly Robbins pushed herself to the top with solid iron shots. Becky Iverson nearly fell off the edge with some shaky putting.
But there they were, tied for the lead at 10-under 206 after the third round of the LPGA Friendly’s Classic at Agawam, Mass.
Robbins shot the best round at seven-under-par 65 and Iverson, the second-round leader, had a par 72. Kris Tschetter was one back after a 72.
Robbins, a three-time LPGA champion who won the McDonald’s LPGA Championship in May, has finished in the top 10 six times this season, including two second-place finishes.
She put on the show with her irons Saturday in the first seven holes at the Crestview Country Club, making six birdies on mostly short putts.
Iverson, a former Michigan amateur who joined the tour in 1993 and has never finished better than 13th, had three bogeys in the first six holes before rallying.
Bob Murphy overcame three bogeys and a double bogey in the first seven holes to shoot a one-over 73 and take a one-stroke lead after three rounds of the British Seniors Open at Portrush, Northern Ireland.
Brian Barnes of Scotland went into the third round with a three-stroke lead, but blew it with a 77. Murphy made his charge with birdies at the ninth, 11th and 17th holes, added to the one he had at the fourth.
New Zealand’s Frank Nobilo shot a six-under-par 65 and tied Sam Torrance of Scotland for the third-round lead in the Dutch Open at 201.
British Open champion John Daly played his worst round of the tournament, a 73, dropping him 10 strokes off the pace at Hilversum, Netherlands.