Several players vying for the first win, a packed qualifier and more from the third round of the Sony Open in Hawaii

Several players vying for the first win, a packed qualifier and more from the third round of the Sony Open in Hawaii

With 18 holes to play at Waialae Country Club, the Sony Open title is on the line.

The finish in Hawaii is set to go down to the wire with 15 players on or within five shots of the go, including many looking for their first career win or first in several years.

Hayden Buckley created some separation late in his round when he stalled his 222-yard approach to just a few feet and converted the eagle to finish the day at 15-under, two shots ahead of the pack. The 2023 Sony would be Buckley’s first victory on the PGA Tour.

If you missed the third round action, don’t worry, we’ve got you covered. Here’s everything you missed from Saturday in Oahu.

Winless Leaders

Hayden Buckley lines up his putt on the third hole during the third round of the Sony Open golf tournament in Hawaii at Waialae Country Club. Mandatory Credit: Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports

Hayden Buckley (under 15), David Lipsky (under 13), Ben Taylor (under 13) and Will Gordon (under 11) are seeking their first PGA Tour wins.

Chris Kirk (13 under), who played in the final group on Saturday with Taylor Montgomery and JJ Spaun, hasn’t won in eight years.

Most likely, Sunday at the Sony Open will change the life of someone close to the lead.

The boys of the last nine

Andrew Putnam lines up his putt on the third hole during the third round of the Sony Open golf tournament in Hawaii at Waialae Country Club. Mandatory Credit: Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports

Nick Taylor and Andrew Putnam started on the back nine thanks to the game being canceled on Friday night. With much of the pressure on their shoulders, they took advantage.

Both players shot an eight-under 62, tying for the day’s round.

Taylor is now 10-under for the week (he made the cut on the number) and five behind, while Putnam is firmly in contention at 12-under, three behind.

“I played very well up front my first nine,” Putnam said after his round. “I think I was 5 years old. A couple of loose swings, a couple of bogeys that I don’t normally do, and then the putter got hot. He made some long putts. I’m pretty sure my gains are pretty high for this round.”

In fact it was. Putnam earned 4,459 strokes on the greens on Saturday. During the week, Putnam is first on SG: Putting.

Taylor will need something special on Sunday to claim the title, while Putnam is in a great position to win his second Tour title and first since 2018.

Take(s) of the day

Hayden Buckley was tied for the lead when he got to the tenth place start. When he came off the par-4 green, he had a two-shot lead thanks to a 132-yard eagle.

Buckley immediately gifted a shot to the No. 11 with a bogey at par 3. After making six straight pars, he nailed a long iron at the final par 5. The perfect swing at the perfect time.

odds of winning

The story originally appeared on GolfWeek

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