GOLF: Landry lurking near top of National leaderboard

Published 6:46 pm Saturday, June 30, 2018

In the parlance of the PGA Tour, Andrew Landry is lurking.

The Port Neches-Groves ex fired a five-under-par 65 Saturday in Tiger Woods’ Quicken Loans National and moved up six places to outright fifth. His 54-hole total of 200 is three shots off the pace of co-leaders Abraham Ancer and Franceso Molinari.

Zach Blair and Ryan Armour are tied for third at 199 in the tournament being played over the TPC Potomac in Potomac, Maryland.

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“I have a chance,” said Landry, who will try to win his second tournament. “When I get it going with my irons like I am now, it is hard to beat me. Of course, if Abe plays as well as he did today (62), he will be tough to catch.

“And I am really impressed with Molinari. I played with him the first two days and he’s a high caliber player. I thought he was as good as anybody I have ever played with. My caddie felt the same way. He is dangerous.”

Landry made six birdies against a lone bogey and through 12 holes was tied for third, only one off the lead. Unlike Friday, when he let several makeable birdie putts get away, he didn’t leave many strokes on the course. An exception was a missed 6-foot birdie on 16.

“I played really well today,” he said. “I rolled the ball well. The putter let me down on Friday. Today was more like round one with the putter. I changed to a Ping Anser this week to get a different look and it has worked well for the most part.”

Landry was paired with Ancer, so he got an up-close-and-personal look at the course record-tying 62 his buddy from the Tour fired to climb to the top of the leaderboard. With Landry’s 65, they were the hottest pairing of the day.

“I didn’t realize he was going that low until about 17,” said Landry. “I felt like we were neck and neck all day. We played awesome golf and feed off each other’s energy.”

In the spirit of high-level golf, and because they are friends, Landry gave Ancer some advice on what he would be up against in trying to win for the first time on the PGA Tour.

“I told him what Steve Elkington told me. Dealing with the media is going to be tough. They will be snapping a lot of pictures during the round. As soon as you let it bother you, you are done. Shut it out. Stay totally focused.”

Landry likes his position because of the way he is hitting the ball.

“I won’t change a thing,” he said. “I just want to continue playing the same game. If my putter heats up, I am capable of going out and shooting eight or nine under because I am giving myself so many chances with my iron shots.”

Even with all the missed putts on Friday, Landry is tied for the fourth most birdies in the field with 15. He’s tied for the fourth fewest bogeys with three. But a double bogey on the par 5, 10th on Friday was costly.

Landry’s birdies in round three came from 4 feet on the par 5, second, from 3 feet on the par 4, seventh, from 15 feet on the par 3, ninth, from 9 feet on the par 5, 10th, from inside a foot on the par 4, 14th and from 10 feet on the par 4, 18th.

While Landry was going low again Saturday, fellow PNG ex Chris Stroud was battling through another up and down round. Stroud was four under through eight holes but wound up settling for an even par 70. He is tied for 57th at 210.

On the Tour, West Orange-Stark ex Michael Arnaud shot a seven-under-par 64 for a 199 total at the 54-hole mark of the Lincoln Land Charity Championship in Springfield, Illinois. He is five shots off the lead.