Great third round has David Toms set up for shot at Colonial title

Posted Saturday, May. 24, 2014  comments  Print Reprints
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David Toms celebrated his wedding anniversary in Fort Worth on Friday night, and he hopes to commemorate the third anniversary of his last PGA triumph with another one on Sunday.

The one-time major champion is in position to collect his first title since winning the Crowne Plaza Invitational at Colonial in 2011 after scaling the leader board on Saturday with a 5-under 65 in the third round.

Toms, who began the day 2 under, was part of a quartet of co-leaders after 54 holes, joining Hideki Matsuyama, Chad Campbell and Chris Stroud, all at 7-under 203.

Toms, a cut casualty twice here since winning, began his tournament with an opening-round 2-over 72 on Thursday. A 4-under 66 on Friday had him in a better mood to have dinner with his wife of 22 years.

“I got out there on Thursday and didn’t have a very good round, so I was disappointed,” said Toms, a Louisiana native who resides in Shreveport. “My wife was driving over for our anniversary, and I certainly didn’t want to turn around and leave and go straight home when she got here.”

Toms, seeking his 14th career victory on tour, dialed in on Saturday, recording six birdies against one bogey at No. 3.

Three birdies at Nos. 9-11 and a final one at the par-3 No. 16 brought out the TV cameras, which rushed to the scene to see what the ruckus from Toms’ LSU-themed gallery was about.

“I came here this week just a little more relaxed and just wanted to enjoy the experience, and I’ve done that so far,” Toms said. “It’s certainly reflective in the way I’ve played the golf course.

“I needed a good round to get into contention. And that’s what I’ve done, so I look forward to tomorrow.”

To date in 2014, Toms has missed five cuts in 12 starts. His best finish is fourth at the Puerto Rico Open in March. His best finish since is 15th at the Zurich Classic, sandwiched between a 53rd at the RBC Heritage and a 48th last week at the HP Byron Nelson Championship.

He had only one top 10 in 16 starts in 2013.

Toms, the 2001 PGA Championship winner, could become the second-oldest Colonial champion at 47, a year older than Ben Hogan, who won his fifth and final event in Fort Worth in 1959. Tom Watson became the oldest champion when he won in 1998 at age 48.

Toms also could join an elite group of players who have won Colonial twice, most recently Zach Johnson in 2010 and 2012.

Hogan has the most Colonial titles with five.

In addition to Johnson, Billy Casper, Julius Boros, Al Geiberger, Ben Crenshaw, Bruce Lietzke, Lee Trevino, Corey Pavin, Nick Price, Kenny Perry and Phil Mickelson all have two titles.

Byron Nelson winner Brendon Todd, Toms’ playing partner Saturday, remained in the hunt to win both Dallas-Fort Worth events in the same season. Only Hogan has done that.

Todd finished Saturday with a 3-under 67. He is tied for 11th at 5 under.

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