Sorenstam, Ochoa continue showdown
Annika Sorenstam built another quick lead and this time made it last, holing a 12-foot birdie on her final hole Saturday to take a three-shot lead over Lorena Ochoa in the Samsung World Championship in Palm Desert, Calif.
Sorenstam is trying to win this elite tournament for a record sixth time, and she has won the previous two years it has been played at Bighorn Golf Club.
At least this year, Ochoa has a fighting chance.
Sorenstam posted the best score of this tournament and finished three rounds at 12-under-par 204.
Ochoa, playing in the group ahead, rattled in a 20-foot birdie putt on the final hole for a 67.
Sorenstam has won LPGA player of the year the last five seasons, and Ochoa has control of the points-based race.
The Mexican star has four victories and five runner-up finishes this year, and she showed at Bighorn that she is not about to go down easily.
Daniel Chopra was the clubhouse leader at 15-under-par after an 8-under 64, and Charley Hoffman was 17 under with four holes to play when darkness forced the suspension of play in the third round of the rain-delayed Frys.com Open in Las Vegas.
Overnight storms that extended into the morning delayed the start by some 31/2 hours and the tournament already had fallen behind schedule.
Bill Haas was at 15 under through 14 holes when play stopped, and Shigeki Maruyama was 15 under through 13.
Last year’s tour rookie of the year Jay Haas birdied the final four holes for a 9-under-par 63 – matching his best round on the tour – and a five-shot lead after two rounds in the Administaff Small Business Classic in Spring, Texas.
Haas, who started the round tied for the lead with Tom Purtzer and Dick Mast, pulled ahead for good with a birdie on No. 10 and finished the day at 16-under 128.
Bruce Lietzke eagled the final hole for a 66 to join Purtzer (68) at 11 under.