Over the last year or so, there have been very few golfers that have played as well as Francesco Molinari, and the Italian now finds himself two shots ahead of Tony Finau and Tiger Woods in Augusta at the Masters. Molinari wasn’t just the Ryder Cup hero for the European team, but he also won the British Open last year. If that is anything to go by, he won’t simply give up much come Sunday after shooting a -6 66 on Saturday to go two shots clear. Finau had the best round of the day, shooting -8 for an astounding 64 to move him into contention. He wasn’t being talked about much before the third round, but he’s right in the thick of it now. The other man that begins the fourth round two shots back is Tiger Woods, who remains steady after a -5 67. Should he win, it would be his first green jacket since 2005 and his 15th major win. Outside of them, Brooks Koepka is a shot back and then Webb Simpson and Ian Poulter are a further shot behind. The leaderboard isn’t quite as packed as it was after two rounds, but it’s still very open and should be a remarkable Sunday.
The NBA Playoffs began on Saturday, and right out of the gate there were three upsets that will make for fine talking points. First of all, the Brooklyn Nets got a 111-102 win on the road over the Philadelphia 76ers to take a 1-0 series lead. The barely above .500 Nets got 26 from rising star D’Angelo Russell and 23 from Caris LeVert to establish a first quarter lead that they held on to throughout the game. Jimmy Butler had 36 points for the Sixers in the defeat.
The Orlando Magic also got off to the ideal start on Saturday in Toronto with a 104-101 win over the Raptors. While D.J. Augustin and Kawhi Leonard had matching point totals for their respective teams at 25, it was Augustin that stole the show, with three of those coming when he hit the game-winning three with only 3.5 seconds to go. Both Eastern Conference series have gotten off to an unexpected start.
So, too, has the Western Conference side of things, at least as far as the Denver Nuggets go. The San Antonio Spurs came into town and beat the #2 seed 101-96 to give Gregg Popovich a 1-0 series lead. DeMar DeRozan, no longer wanted by Toronto, led the Spurs with 18 points in a team effort as they saw off the battling Nuggets. Gary Harris led all scorers for the Nuggets. In the other game of the day, Golden State saw off the Clippers 121-104 in what was a fairly comfortable win for the defending champs.
We wrap up with some great news. The streak is over. That is Chris Davis’ non-hitting streak. The Baltimore Orioles man was 0-54 coming into his first at-bat on Saturday, and he wasted no time getting it. He lined a two run single to right field, ending the streak and then asking for the ball. Glad that’s over now, and hopefully he can go back and live his life normally again!