Barracuda Notebook: ‘Solo’ Brett Drewitt finds a lonely course
RENO — Brett Drewitt was the “rabbit” Saturday morning at the 19th annual Barracuda Championship.
A total of 71 golfers made the cut, meaning somebody had to play a solo round, and that honor, if you will, fell to Drewitt at 8:55 a.m.
Drewitt, who entered the round with 10 points and added 6 (70 stroke score) to finish with 16 points through 54 holes, played the course in 3-hours 20-minutes.
It was a fast round, but nowhere near the 2-hour 51-minute round recorded by Richard S. Johnson of Sweden back in 2004. Johnson shot a final-round 8-under 64 that day, and was gone from the course before any media members could talk to him.
“It was good and bad,” Drewitt said when asked what it was like to play solo. “It was a little weird.
“It was nice not having to wait for people to putt out. But if you take a big divot your caddie has to replace it, and if you hit out of a bunker, your caddie has to rake the trap, so you are still waiting (sometimes).”
Drewitt said he had to caution himself not to play too fast; keep playing at a comfortable level.
“I played pretty well,” he said. “I had a little trouble on 12 and 13 (double bogey and bogey), but then I had two straight birdies after that.”
He certainly won’t have to worry about playing solo today since Graham DeLaet dropped out, leaving the field at 70.
MOVING ON UP
Saturday is considered moving day on the PGA Tour, and Rory Sabbatini vaulted up the leaderboard.
Sabbatini scored 13 points and moved from a tie for 45 to a tie for 16th.
Sabbatini recorded two eagles, but also had a double-bogey and two bogeys in his 13-point round that vaulted him into contention heading into today’s final round.
“Yeah, obviously I gave myself a chance,” Sabbatini said. “I’ve got to go out there (today) and probably do something similar; score a lot of points and give myself a better opportunity. But yeah, the scores are out there. It’s just taking advantage of the golf course.”
Sabbatini racked up six points with birdie putts of 5, 10 and 8-feet, respectively on Nos. 2, 4 and 6. His first eagle came on No. 8
After pars on Nos. 9 through 12, he chipped in from the fringe for an eagle on the par-5 13th, and then drained a 10-footer on 14.
“Yeah, I hit driver to the right side of the fairway and then hit a 5-wood to about 25 feet from the hole, just pin high left on the fringe and putted in for eagle,” Sabbatini said. “On 13, I hit driver in the fairway, hit an 8-iron on the right fringe, and probably about 13, 14 feet from the hole, and chipped that one in for eagle.”
He ran into trouble on 18, hitting his second shot into the water. After the drop, he hit his fourth shot 17 feet from the hole, but ran the par putt 2 feet past the hole.
CHANGE IN SCHEDULE
Due to potential afternoon weather, tournament officials have decided to use split tees for today’s final round starting at 7:39 a.m.
The leaders will tee off around 9:40 a.m.
The two toughest holes were on the front side – Nos. 1 and 5. The 494-yard par-4 1st played to a 4.271 and the 491-yard par-4 5th played to a 4.20.
The easiest hole was the par-5 13th, and it played to a 4.457. The second-easiest hole was the 2nd, a 571-yard par-5. It played to a 4.514.
Boise State alum Graham DeLaet withdrew from the tourney during the fifth hole. He told tournament officials he had injured his back.
Smylie Kaufman withdrew after the third round. Kaufman had a minus-7 on Saturday.