Calvin Peete uncharacteristically missed six fairways today, but parred his final hole to finish with 68 and take a two-stroke lead going into Sunday's final round of the 54-hole, rain-shortened Anheuser-Busch Classic.
Peete shot 66 in Thursday's opening round and resumed today on the fourth hole, having played just three holes Friday before rains forced him off the course.
When told that Peete had no bogeys in 36 holes over the hills and valleys of Kingsmill, second-place sharer Bill Rogers said, "That's unbelievable. No bogeys in 36 holes around this place." Peete's total of 134 leads Rogers (70) and Rik Massengale (68) by two strokes.
Should Peete add victory here to the Milwaukee Open title he won two weeks ago, he would become only the second black on the PGA Tour to win two events in one year. Lee Elder of Washington won at Milwaukee and Westchester in 1978; Elder is four shots back in this tournament.
One of fewer than a dozen blacks on the tour, Peete is having an outstanding year, his best ever. He is 17th on the 1982 money list at $125,436. His Milwaukee triumph was the second of his career and he was tied for the lead last week at Quad Cities before Payne Stewart closed with 63 to win.
Today, Rogers made three birdies and said he was "happy I have a chance to win the tournament."
Massengale bogeyed his final hole after hitting his approach shot into a greenside bunker; he missed a 15-foot par putt. Massengale has been struggling since winning his third PGA tournament in 1977, the Bob Hope Desert Classic.
Hal Sutton (69) and Quad Cities winner Stewart (68) follow at 137.
Precisionist Peete, best on the PGA Tour in hitting fairways from the tee and second only to Jack Nicklaus in greens hit in regulation, made two birdies in the 15 holes he played today after birdieing the first of the three holes he played Friday.
On his final hole, Peete pushed his tee shot into rough and used a long iron for his second shot. It ended up 20 yards short of the green, 200 feet from the pin. His wedge third shot bounced, struck the cup and stopped four feet above it. He sank the par putt.
"I didn't drive the ball as well as Thursday," Peete said. "I hit into some spots I was not familiar with. This was a little more exciting."
Peete pushed his drive into rough on the par-4 eighth, hit his second into the greenside bunker and exploded out weakly, but he rolled in the 25-foot putt to save par.
He knocked in an 18-foot birdie on the next hole and parred the rest, except for a birdie on the par-3 No. 13, where his six-iron tee shot lit two feet from the hole.
"We had better scoring conditions than the guys who played Friday," said Peete. "I had putts at 16 and 17 that I thought were in when I hit them. The greens just weren't quite as fast as I thought. I wanted to be close, but I wasn't going to charge the hole right then."
First-round leader Bruce Lietzke (65) had not completed the first hole Friday when forced off the course by rain. He resumed today, starting with his third shot from beside the first green. He chipped five feet past the hole, missed the putt, took bogey and fell out of the lead. He continued to struggle with his putter and shot 74.
Lietzke's 139 left him a stroke behind Elder, Dave Edwards (70), Dan Pohl (66) and Doug Black (66). Elder shot five-under-par 66 Friday and was one of 60 golfers in the field of 156 to complete their second round before the storm ended the day's play. Those 60 took today off while the rest of the field completed their second 18s today.
Craig Stadler, the tour's leading money winner and two-time Kemper Open champion, shot a pair of 77s and missed the cut. Sam Snead added 75 to an opening 79 and also fell out.
Fred Funk was the only Washington-area player besides Elder to make the cut (144), carding 71--143. Other area players: Al Morton, 75-72--147, Tony DeLuca 74-76--150, Woody FitzHugh 78-74--152, Fred Gibson, 76-35 withdrew.