Scott Gutschewski's 2-over 73 in the third round of the Pinnacle Bank Championship would have plunged him down the leader board many Saturdays.
Not this week. The Omaha tour veteran dropped only 10 spots, to a tie for 17th at 5-under, entering Sunday's final round at Indian Creek.
"I knew it was tough with that wind. You're trying not to screw up and salvage what you can,'' Gutschewski said. "Every shot is important, and you're trying to finish as high as you can."
His highlight of the round was an eagle on the par-5 15th as he hit a 6-iron to six feet. It offset a double bogey on 12, when he bladed a shot from a fairway bunker into a penalty area along the right side of the hole. But he also bogeyed the par-3 17th, which took him out of a tie for ninth and into a slightly earlier tee time Sunday.
He'll start at 10:46 a.m. with Zac Blair and Blayne Barber.
Too many doubles for Kluver
Luke Kluver's third round had a fast start and a solid finish. But in the middle, playing nine holes in 7-over par wrecked his round.
Norfolk's three-time Class A high school champion, who will play this fall at Kansas, finished the front nine double bogey, double bogey, bogey. A third double bogey, on 13, sent him to 6-over.
He birdied the par-5 15th and parred the final three holes to shoot 5-over 76 — his highest score of the week after a pair of even-par 71s — to be at 5-over for the tournament and in an 8 a.m. starting time Sunday.
"We were 2-under through four holes, and that was the start I wanted,'' Kluver said. "I was in good position on the par-5 (No. 7) and hit a very loose shot that got away from me and I made double there. And unfortunately I had a couple more of those coming in.
"It's too bad I didn't keep it rolling.
The swing felt good." What he learned from the round is that it could have been worse. "I stayed with it. My patience was still there,'' Kluver said.
Rookie Kristoffer Ventura holds the 54-hole lead for the first time in his Korn Ferry Tour career.
Ventura looks to become the 10th 54-hole leader/co-leader to go on and win this season. Nelson Ledesma accomplished the feat last week at the TPC Colorado Championship at Heron Lakes.
This week's purse is $600,000, with $108,000 going to the champion. The winner will also receive 500 Korn Ferry Tour points.
The par-3 fifth hole (218 yards) ranked as the toughest hole on the course Saturday, playing to an average of 3.224. The par-5 15th hole (573 yards) ranked as the easiest hole.
At the tournament's Cox Business Pro-Am, amateur members of the winning teams were Jeff Jorth, Grant Matthies, Corey Watton and Levi Scheppers in the morning and Chad McMahon, Chad Peterson, Alex Thomsen and Dustin Heng in the afternoon.
After twosomes for the third round, Sunday's play will be in threesomes with an eye on the weather.
One option if there are storms overnight or in the morning will be to start at 10 a.m. and use the first and 10th tees. The hope is for a 5 p.m. finish, as would be the case with an 8 a.m., first-tee start.
— Stu Pospisil