Scott Stallings holds a five-shot lead over five golfers entering Sunday's final round of the $5.6 million Humana Challenge and said he plans to "do the same thing I've done for the last three days.''
"I've been aggressive,'' said Stallings, who fired a nine-under par 63
at the Jack Nicklaus Private Course at PGA West in Saturday's third round.
"I've been smart when I got out of position. Just because I played really
good, doesn't mean that I've hit it perfect on every single hole.
"I've scrambled a bit, but when I got out of position off the tee, I
played smart. I hit in in the middle of the green and just kind of accepted par
and moved on and was really aggressive when I had the opportunity.
"The same thing goes (today). Obviously, a lot can happen coming down
the back nine, especially with all the birdie holes coming in, but it is what
it is, and go out there and try to be aggressive early and go from there.''
A five-shot lead is "not anything you can't overcome,'' according to
Charley Hoffman, one of the five golfers tied for second.
"I definitely think it can be done,'' said Hoffman, the tournament
champion in 2007. "Obviously Scott sort of controls his own destiny. If he
gets off to a hot start and makes some birdies early, it's going to be hard on
Stallings began Saturday's play among four players tied for third, one
shot behind co-leaders James Hahn and Roberto Castro. He played the back nine
first, had a birdie on the 12th hole, an eagle on the 13th and a birdie on the
17th, before birdieing the fourth through sixth holes and eagling the eighth.
Stallings said it was a "huge help'' playing in the same foursome as
John Rollins, who shot an eight-under 64 Saturday to move into a tie for second
after beginning the round in a 10-way tie for 33rd.
"He's a good guy and he was an easy guy to club off of,'' said Stallings, who is at 22-under-par 194 for the tournament.
"He played well just like I did. We made a lot of birdies the last couple of days and so we kind of fed off each other and that's definitely what you need to try to do in this format.''
Joining Hoffman and Rollins among the five golfers tied for second at 17-
under-199 are Castro, who shot a three-under-69 at La Quinta County Club,
Stewart Cink, and Charles Howell III.
Hahn, the other co-leader entering Saturday's play, shot a even-par 72
at the Nicklaus Private Course, dropping into a 11-way tie for 19th at 14-under-
202, eight shots behind Stallings.
The initial field of 156 was reduced to 70 plus ties at the completion
of Saturday's play. Among those missing the cut was Mark Wilson, last year's
champion, whose three-round total of seven-under-par 209 was three shots higher than the cut.
The winner will receive $1.008 million.