Adam Scott was losing ground Saturday at Firestone when he decided to stick with what was working. Four birdies later, he had a 4-under 66 and a one-shot lead in the Bridgestone Invitational.
On a day when seven players had a share of the lead at one point, Scott went back to a left-to-right shape off the tee and surged through the back nine to take a one-shot lead over Jason Day and Ryo Ishikawa, the 19-year-old from Japan who will try to become the youngest winner of a PGA Tour event in 100 years.
Scott was at 12-under 198, the lowest 54-hole score at Firestone in 10 years.
About the only thing Tiger Woods can now get out of this week are four rounds and some points to help him qualify for the FedEx Cup playoffs at the end of the month. Woods, a seven-time winner at Firestone who hasn't played in nearly three months, struggled again with his putting and had a 72. He was 13 shots behind in a tie for 38th in the 76-man field.
"I've just got to put together a good round and let it build," Woods said.
Scott atop the leaderboard should be compelling enough, especially with Woods back to golf. It was only two weeks ago when Woods announced he had fired his caddie, Steve Williams, and Scott picked him up on a full-time basis.
But that's became old news because of the youngest player in the field.
Ishikawa might be the only other player in golf to appreciate what it's like to get attention like Woods. He has been a star in Japan since he won his first tournament as a 15-year-old amateur, and his 10 wins on the Japan Golf Tour include shooting a 58 in the final round to win The Crowns.
But he doesn't get much respect in these parts because he has struggled in America, with only one top 10 in 2010, when he reached the third round of the Match Play Championship.
Ishikawa hopes to change that today.
PGA: Scott Piercy reeled off eight consecutive birdies to post a 28 on the front nine and eagled the 616-yard closing hole to break the course record with an 11-under 61, taking a two-stroke lead after three rounds of the Reno-Tahoe Open.
Piercy, winless in three years on the PGA Tour, enters the final round at 13-under 203, two ahead of Josh Teater and three ahead of a group that includes 1995 PGA champion Steve Elkington.
Elkington had a 68 to get to 10-under 206. He was tied for third with 2006 Reno champ Chris Riley, Nick O'Hern, Pat Perez, John Merrick and Blake Adams.
CHAMPIONS: Peter Senior shot a bogey-free 67 and John Huston of Palm Harbor birdied No. 18 for a 68 that left them tied for the lead at 12 under after the second round of the 3M Championship in Blaine, Minn.
Jay Haas, the co-leader after the first round, shot a 69 and was one back.