Scott Hoch managed his game and difficult weather conditions to stretch his lead to four shots Saturday in the third round of the Sarazen World Open Championship.
Hoch shot a 2-under-par 70 for a 54-hole total of 14-under 202 on the hilly 6,967-yard The Legends course at Chateau Elan, a resort 50 miles north of Atlanta.Defending champion Frank Nobilo of New Zealand remained second after a 72.
"I'm pleased with where I am, but it's a long hard day," Hoch said. "It's a struggle out there. You have to fight to survive. It's very easy for your mind to stray."
"Scott played extremely well," Nobilo said. "He didn't seem to be in the trouble I was."
Hoch, a seven-time winner during his 17 years on the PGA Tour, began the round two shots in front. He held that advantage over Nobilo when both teed off at the 213-yard, par-3 12th.
At 12, Hoch knocked in a 35-foot birdie putt, and Nobilo, who missed the green on the left, made bogey. It gave Hoch a 4-shot edge over Nobilo, Craig Stadler and Sweden's Daniel Chopra, who qualified for the event by winning the 1995 Republic of China Open.
Both Stadler and Chopra fell back a little. Stadler finishing with a 70 for a 207. Chopra's 70 left him at 209 - which included bogeys on the final two holes.
Payne Stewart was lodged between Stadler and Chopra at 208 after shooting a 71.
First-round leader Todd Barranger struggled to a 76 and dropped back into eighth place alone at 211. He was one shot behind Nick Price of Zimbabwe, who carded a 70, and Davis Love III, who had a 73.
Seniors Emerald Coast Classic
MILTON, Fla. - Dave Eichelberger and Larry Gilbert each shot par-70 Saturday to share the lead after the second round of the chilly, wind swept Emerald Coast Classic.
Gilbert and Eichelberger were at 4-under par 136 after 36 holes, one stroke ahead of Jay Sigel and Dave Stockton at the 54-hole Senior PGA Tour event.
Morning showers quickly gave way to sunny skies, but temperatures never got out of the 60s and the wind blew between 10 and 20 mph across the nearly treeless, Scottish style course at The Moors Golf Club in the Florida Panhandle.
"The wind really played havoc out there," said Gilbert, who double bogeyed two holes.
Three golfers - David Graham, Bruce Crampton and Rocky Thompson - were bunched two strokes behind the leaders.
HONG KONG - Australian Scott Laycock took a two-shot lead in the Alfred Dunhill Masters by firing a 6-under-par 65 in Saturday's third round for a 199 total.
Thailand's Boonchu Ruangkit, who had a 67, and Taiwan's Hsieh yu-shu, with a 68, were tied for second.
Bernhard Langer of Germany and Australian Stephen Leaney were next at 202.
Japan Queens Cup
AZUMA, Japan - The wind and rain didn't bother Maggie Will at the Japan Queens Cup where she shot a 1-under-par 71 Saturday to get a share of the second-round lead at the LPGA Tour's final full-field event of the year.
The forecast for Sunday was for a 60 percent chance of rain.
That's OK with Will, tied at 4-under 140 with Mayumi Hirase, who shot her second straight 70 on Saturday.