Ken Newlin of Chantilly lost a big lead, then regained the top spot by parring the final hole yesterday for 73 -- 143 and a one-shot advantage heading into today's final round of the 54-hole Northern Virginia Amateur golf tournament at Hidden Creek in Reston.
Mike DelRocco, also of Chantilly, pulled even with Newlin with a birdie at the 17th hole, but then drove into a lateral hazard and bogeyed the 18th. DelRocco is second at 72 -- 144, followed by Tim Vigotsky of the host club, who shot the day's best round of 69 for 145, and two-time champion Gill FitzHugh of Army Navy, 71 -- 146.
Newlin, 48, looked tired as he double-bogeyed the 15th hole and then bogeyed the following hole, allowing DelRocco to pull within one stroke. There was a reason.
Newlin played 18 holes in a member-guest at Fauquier Springs before playing in Reston. He will do the same thing before today's final round.
"I committed myself," said Newlin, who lives in Nokesville and works for an electronics firm in Tyson's Corner. "He's a friend of mine and the pro over there lets us off the first tee early.
"I got tired coming in and lost my concentration there (on the double-bogey hole). But I have no excuses."
Newlin, who opened with 70, had a two-shot lead over DelRocco as the day began and increased it to four after a fine front nine of one-under-par 35.
DelRocco, hitting long straight drives, pecked away and finally pulled even when he birdied the par-3 17th hole while Newlin took par.
On the woods-lined par-4 18th hole, DelRocco was first planning to hit a driver, but then opted for an iron tee shot and hit the ball into a creek on the right and took bogey 5. Newlin two-putted from 50 feet on the 18th green for par.
Greg Williams, Washington Redskins defensive back, made six birdies for 74 -- 150 and is tied for eighth place.