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MEDIATE CONTINUES TO SOLVE TRICKY LAYOUT, LEADS PHOENIX BY SIX SHOTS

Rocco Mediate wasn't in awe of Tiger Woods, and he proved it Saturday.

Playing in a group with golf's biggest attraction, Mediate shot a 5-under-par 66 to increase a two-stroke lead to six shots in the Phoenix Open. His third straight sub-70 round gave him a 54-hole score of 11-under 202.

"I know what I've got to do," said Mediate, who collected his two championships in 13 years on tour by winning playoffs. "I've got to drive onto the first fairway tomorrow. That's my whole plan right now. Once that happens, I'll keep going."

Woods, who has won seven titles in a little more than two full seasons, had to birdie the last hole to finish with a 70 and a second-place 208.

"I made my share of mistakes," Woods said. "I made three bogeys today, which is kind of uncalled for. If you need to make a move, you can't afford to be making bogeys."

He was one shot ahead of 1993 winner Lee Janzen, Harrison Frazar and first-round leader Justin Leonard going into today's final round (3 p.m., Ch. 4).

Leonard, who shot a 67, had to make up part of the second round earlier Saturday and had a midpoint score of par 142, the average cut score in 12 previous years on the TPC of Scottsdale layout.

But the fairways were narrowed during the offseason, the rough was allowed to grow to five inches, and tricky pin placements seemed to baffle everyone but Mediate.

Unusually cool weather frosted the greens and delayed the start of play all three rounds, forcing some players to return at sunrise the next day to complete the first and second rounds.

The championship field of 71 wasn't determined until near midday Saturday, and it included nine players at 147, the highest cut in tournament history.

David Duval, who won both of his previous tournaments this month, got to keep playing at 145 and then capitalized by shooting a 66 in the third round.

But 1997 Phoenix champion Steve Jones, who shot a 26-under 258 here two years ago to tie the second-lowest, 72-hole score in PGA Tour history, missed the cut after rounds of 71-77, and Vijay Singh, the 1995 winner, withdrew after 35 holes because he was 7-over.

In Woods' only other appearance in Phoenix, he tied for 18th in 1997. He said the 7,083-yard layout was much more unforgiving.

"You probably won't see a course like this until maybe Augusta," Woods said.

Webb goes wire to wire

WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. -- Karrie Webb got the 17th hole right this time.

After taking a two-stroke penalty at the next-to-last hole in the third round, Webb birdied No. 17 to finish at 10-under-par 278 and win the LPGA's Office Depot tournament. Webb, who also birdied the 16th, was one of five players tied for the lead at 9-under when she arrived at the 17th tee.

It was at No. 17 where Webb nearly lost the tournament a day earlier, when she was assessed a two-stroke penalty for accidentally grounding her club in a hazard that dropped her into a tie for the third-round lead.

"Yes, I thought about it for a moment when I got to the 17th tee today," Webb said. "But I don't think you can say a hole owes you anything. I made a mistake there yesterday. Today, I put one of my best swings this week on a 203-yard 3-iron."

The ball stopped 20 feet from the hole and she two-putted for birdie and the lead.

Kris Tschetter and Dottie Pepper tied for second at 9-under 279, with rounds of 66 and 71. At 8-under 280 were Gail Graham, Kelly Robbins and Juli Inkster.

Colbert has big first day

KOHALA COAST, Hawaii -- Jim Colbert held all the cards -- and took all the cash -- on the first day of the Senior Skins Game.

Colbert, playing only because Jack Nicklaus couldn't, rolled in three birdie putts to earn $150,000 and become the biggest first-day winner in the event's history.

Still, Colbert realizes today is the big money day in skins play.

"You can't win it the first day. The game is still very much on the table," Colbert said after shutting out playing partners Raymond Floyd, the five-defending champion, Arnold Palmer and Hale Irwin.

The final two holes were tied, so the first hole today will be worth $90,000, and $300,000 more of the purse is still up for grabs.

Colbert won three holes worth seven skins as a fill-in for Nicklaus, who missed the tournament to have hip replacement surgery.

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