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U.S. Senior Open: With only three players finishing under par, Oak Tree National course wins Saturday

Only seven golfers are under par heading into Sunday’s final round, led by Gene Sauers. He sits 7-under, three shots ahead of Bernhard Langer and Scott Dunlap and four shots ahead of Colin Montgomerie.
by Jenni Carlson Modified: July 13, 2014 at 12:00 am •  Published: July 12, 2014

— Oak Tree National won Saturday.

Now, who will win Sunday?

On a day that the wind was high and the temperatures were higher, the scores followed suit. Only three players in the remaining field of 66 at the U.S. Senior Open shot rounds that were under par.

“Just nasty conditions out there,” Rocco Mediate said.

Here’s how nasty — Mediate was 3-under on his round at one point Saturday but back-to-back bogeys to finish left him at even par for the day and 2-over for the tournament.

And yet, he’s still on the leaderboard.

Only seven golfers are under par heading into Sunday’s final round, led by Gene Sauers. He sits 7-under, three shots ahead of Bernhard Langer and Scott Dunlap and four shots ahead of Colin Montgomerie.

The first tee time is 7:20 a.m. Sunday with the leaders teeing off at 12:40 p.m.

Montgomerie was the leader after Day 1 and Day 2, but after carding birdies on two of his first four holes and getting to 8-under, he bogeyed six of the last 14 holes. He finished 3-over on the day and stands 3-under for the tournament.

Montgomerie and everyone else in the field will now be chasing Sauers. He is the only player in the field who has been under par every day of the tournament, but it wasn’t easy Saturday. Sauers woke up with a fever.

“I just kept telling my caddie, ‘Give me that towel so I can keep cool,’” Sauers said. “I just kind of mustered everything up.”

If Sauers holds onto his lead, he will win a golf tournament for the first time in more than a decade. Once a regular on the PGA Tour, he walked away from golf out of frustration in 2005, then developed a spate of serious medical conditions that nearly killed him. While he lay in a hospital in 2011, he decided that if he ever got out of that bed, he wanted to play golf again.

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by Jenni Carlson
Columnist
Jenni Carlson, a sports columnist at The Oklahoman since 1999, came by her love of sports honestly. She grew up in a sports-loving family in Kansas. Her dad coached baseball and did color commentary on the radio for the high school football...
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