Golf

Logjam at the top in Allianz

Doug Garwood, above, shot an 8-under 64 to join Olin Browne, Scott McCarron and Joe Durant at 12-under.
Doug Garwood, above, shot an 8-under 64 to join Olin Browne, Scott McCarron and Joe Durant at 12-under. For the Miami Herald

If you have ever been on a South Florida expressway during a work morning, there’s only one word to describe it — logjam.

That’s also how you would describe the Allianz Championship after two rounds on The Old Course at Broken Sound in Boca Raton.

Four players — first-day leader Olin Browne (63-69), Scott McCarron (66-66), Joe Durant (67-65) and Doug Garwood (68-64) — are all tied at the top with 12-under-par 132 totals heading into Sunday’s final round of the PGA Tour Champions event.

Not tight enough for you? Well, just below the leaders are seven other golfers within two strokes.

Let the final-day showdown begin.

Browne concisely summed up what he expects in that final round.

“It will be a shootout, bro,” he said. “There are four at 12-under, so somebody is going to shoot 8-under Sunday, whether it’s somebody in the last group or the other groups at the top.

“There’s going to be a 64 or 65. There might be a 63.”

Does Browne think he will be the guy that pummels par on the final day.

“I can’t tell you that right now,” he said, “but stick around and, hopefully, I’ll be talking to you about it.”

Browne came off the course Saturday saying his round was “a lot of work” because he spent most of the day struggling with his swing. He made par — actually, battled to save par most of the time — on his first 12 holes, then staged a surge at the end with birdies on holes 13, 15 and 18.

He said he wasn’t physically tired, but confessed, “I’m mentally shot, though. My brain, there’s a lot of stuff running around in there, pinging around. The round was more work than I like doing. I like it when it’s easy.”

The other three leaders seemed to have more conventional days on the course.

McCarron’s Saturday round was highlighted by making five birdies with one bogey on the back nine for a 32.

“Somebody will have to go low in the final round,” he predicted.

Durant also blistered the final nine holes, going one stroke better than McCarron by shooting a 31 with six birdies and one bogey.

With a grin, Durant said of the final round, “It’s going to be fun … real fun.”

Durant is particularly fond of the greens on The Old Course.

“They better hang onto the greens superintendent here because it’s in immaculate shape,” he said.

Garwood was also looking forward to Sunday’s showdown.

“Right now, the tournament is only two-thirds of the way done, so still a long way to go,” he said.

Most well-known of the players in the top 11 is Fred Couples, who is one shot back after rounds of 68-65.

“I didn’t do anything overwhelming, but I didn’t do much poor,” said Couples, who not surprisingly drew the largest gallery of the day.

Couples, who holed a sand wedge from 90 yards out for eagle on No. 10 Saturday, sat out most of last season with a bad back but said recently he is encouraged about his physical status.

“Last year, I couldn’t even play,” he said. “This year, I want to play. I want to see if I can win again, and Sunday I have a shot here.”

Then again, so do a lot of people.

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