John Cook made PGA Tour history Saturday and stretched his lead to six strokes with an 8-under-par 63 in the third round of the $1.35 million St. Jude Classic.
Cook's eight birdies and no bogeys gave him a 54-hole total of 24-under 189, the lowest score in PGA Tour history through the first three rounds. That breaks the previous mark of 191 set by Johnny Palmer in 1954 and tied by Gay Brewer in 1967.His 189 also tied the low total through three consecutive rounds set by Charlie Harper during the 1954 Texas Open.
"A lot of good things have happened to me this week, obviously, and hopefully it's got one more day in it because that's as good as I can play, obviously, for three straight days," said Cook, who last won a tournament in 1992.
John Adams, playing with Cook in the final group, started the round three strokes behind Cook. But he finished six back at 18-under 195 despite his own mistake-free round of five birdies for a 66.
Kenny Perry was briefly tied with Adams for second at 16-under, but he fell back to 196 after a 67. Paul Stankowski shot 66 but was 10 back at 199. Kirk Triplett (64) and Justin Leonard (66) were at 200.
Cook, whose only bogey through 54 holes came Friday, turned in five of his eight birdies on the back nine to match the biggest lead through three rounds on tour this year and in the history of the tournament sponsored by FedEx.
Dave Hill (1967) and Ray Floyd (1982) each led by five strokes and went on to win.
"My caddie and I are along the same mode, not getting too excited because we know what we have to do," Cook said.
A 20-foot birdie putt on the par-3, 223-yard No. 14 closed his birdie run and moved him five strokes ahead. Cook added his final birdie on No. 16 when he set up an 8-footer with a sand wedge.
Bell Atlantic Classic
PHILADELPHIA - Local favorite Jay Sigel attacked the course with a 4-under-par 66 in the second round to take a share of the lead Saturday with John Schroeder at the Senior PGA's $900,000 Bell Atlantic Classic.
Sigel, who birdied Nos. 2, 4, 6, 8 and 9 on the front, had a 5-under-par 135 after 36 holes. Schroeder followed Friday's 68 with a 67 to keep pace.
Tom Wargo, a co-leader after 18 holes, was one stroke back. Bobby Stroble was at 137, Dale Douglass at 138, and defending champion Jim Colbert and Walter Morgan were at 139.
LPGA Rochester International
ROCHESTER, N.Y. - Amy Fruhwirth played just one hole Saturday, yet fell back into a tie for the lead with Michelle Estill in the rain-curtailed second round of the Rochester International.
Just 66 of the 141 golfers completed the second round after a downpour suspended play for almost seven hours at the Locust Hill Country Club course.
Estill, who played just two holes, sank a 40-foot birdie putt on the par-4 first to join Fruhwirth at 4-under-par. They lie one shot ahead of five players.