McCullough has one-stroke lead after third-round 67


DEARBORN, Mich. (AP) -- Mike McCullough figures he just has to
keep doing what he's already done three times to win his first

He shot a 5-under 67 Saturday to reach 12-under and take a
one-stroke lead into the final round of the Senior Players
Championship, the fourth and final Senior PGA Tour major.
McCullough is the only player to break 70 in every round.

''I would like to shoot four rounds in the 60s, that should do
it,'' McCullough said. ''If I can shoot four rounds in the 60s, I
will be very happy that the golf course didn't defeat me.''

Hubert Green shot a 1-under one day after tying the course
record with a 63 and beginning the third round with a three-stroke
lead. Green, who will begin Sunday one stroke behind McCullough,
knows it wouldn't be wise to just focus on beating McCullough
because the TPC of Michigan is susceptible to low scores.

''If I worry about Mike McCullough and he shoots 73, and
somebody shoots a 64, we're going to be looking at each other and
not making a big check,'' said Green, who admitted he didn't handle
the pressure of being the leader.

Stewart Ginn is alone in third at 8-under after shooting 70.

Two-time champion Raymond Floyd, who had the best day with a 65,
is at 7 under along with Doug Tewell, Larry Nelson, and first-round
leader Hale Irwin. Irwin hasn't broken par since setting nine-hole
and first-round records on Thursday.

Jim Thorpe, at 6 under with Bob Murphy, believes the tournament
is still wide open.

''At 6, you're still in this,'' Thorpe said. ''Even if you have
a lead late, you can't get too comfortable. If you miss the fairway
on 16, 17 or 18, those holes can give you a double-bogey.''

McCullough seems to know that.

''I would like to have a two-stroke lead coming into the last
tee because that hole is so hard for me,'' McCullough said. ''I've
played it well (with pars) three times now, but boy, I'd hate to
have to challenge myself there to win the tournament. I'd like to
have a cushion.''

McCullough, who never won a tournament on the PGA Tour, won the
Mexico Senior Classic and the Emerald Coast Classic last year. His
best finish this season has been a tie for second at the BellSouth
Senior Classic last month and he has three other top-10 finishes.

The 57-year-old McCullough withdrew from the U.S. Senior Open
two weeks ago during the first round because of a neck injury and
withdrew from the Senior PGA Championship after shooting an 80 on
Thursday because he was too frustrated to continue. He finished
tied for 19th at The Tradition in April, the first major of the

His best finish at a major was second at last year's Tradition.

McCullough feels good about his chances of winning his first
major because he has finished in the top 10 in three of the past
four Senior Players Championships.

He made his move in the middle of the course Saturday.

After making a birdie at No. 7, he moved into a tie for the lead
with Green, who was in his playing group, despite never hitting the
fairway. His drive went into the right rough and his second shot
landed in the left rough before his approach set him up for a
35-foot putt.

He took the lead for good with a birdie at 9, but insists it
didn't excite him.

''It was too early to think about having the lead,'' he said.

McCullough's birdie at 11 gave him a three-stroke lead, and he
maintained his cushion until Green finished strong with birdies at
Nos. 16 and 17 to pull within a stroke.

Defending champion Allen Doyle shot a 69 and trails by eight
shots along with Fuzzy Zoeller and three others.