Petersen aims for second Nationwide victory

Updated: August 6, 2005, 5:56 PM ET
Associated Press

OMAHA, Neb. -- It's been five years since Scott Petersen won on the Nationwide Tour. Steve LeBrun has never won on the tour.

Both are in position to end those droughts going into Sunday's final round of the $625,000 Cox Classic. Petersen holds a two-shot lead over LeBrun after both shot 8-under 63s Saturday.

"I feel like I can birdie every hole right now," Petersen said of his third straight bogey-free round. "Maybe I'll have a 61 or 62 in me tomorrow. We'll see."

After shooting a Champions Run course-record 11-under 59 with two eagles Friday, Jason Gore was at it again -- temporarily -- in the third round. He didn't get off to a quick start, going 1-over through four holes. An eagle and three birdies put him in a tie with Petersen and second-round leader Jon Mills through nine holes.

Gore, looking for the automatic promotion to the PGA Tour that would come with a third straight Nationwide win, came in with a 1-over 36 on the back nine. He finished with a 68, tying him with Mills, who shot 71.

Petersen's 19-under 194 puts him in position to go for his second Nationwide Tour victory. LeBrun is at 196, followed by Roger Tambellini at 197, and Gore and Mills at 198.

There are 11 golfers within seven shots of the leader.

Seven birdies on the first 12 holes and another on No. 17 enabled Petersen to overcome a four-shot deficit and chase down Mills, who shot 60 Friday. But Mills couldn't muster enough birdies to withstand the charge of Petersen, LeBrun and others.

LeBrun started Saturday's round with three straight bogeys. But he got to 4-under with two holes to play, then finished with two eagles.

His eagle-eagle finish didn't require a putt. He holed out from 141 yards on the par-5 17th and from 159 yards on the par-4 18th to tie Petersen for the day's best round.

"I can't imagine that's ever happened to too many people," LeBrun said. "I don't know what to say. I can't believe it."

He also eagled No. 4 -- with a 20-foot downhill putt -- after his terrible start, thus becoming only the ninth player in Nationwide Tour history with three eagles in one round.

"I just thought there's tons of birdies to be made," LeBrun said when asked his thoughts after the three bogeys.

Adding three eagles to his five birdies on putts of 6 inches to 9 feet puts him in the final group Sunday with Petersen and Tambellini.

Petersen, whose only win came in 2000, would almost match his earnings of $112,682 for 2004 if he wins. The winner of the Cox Classic gets $112,500.

Copyright 2005 by The Associated Press