Steve Stricker, Paul Broadhurst tied for first heading into final round of American Family Insurance Championship

Steve Stricker will head to the final day of the American Family Insurance Championship with a share of the lead and a chance to win the tournament for the first time.

Playing in front of the hometown fans, the Madison resident shot an 8-under 64 to get to -15 for the weekend, the lowest 36-hole score in tournament history. Paul Broadhurst drilled a long putt on the 18th to tie Stricker at the top, with first-round leader Justin Leonard two shots back.

“I’ll be nervous, but you have to embrace it, otherwise it’s just going to get the best of you,” Stricker said of Sunday’s final round. “I’m looking forward to the challenge, and I’ll have to fight some nerves for sure tomorrow.

“The score is low, so somebody could come from behind. It just doesn’t have to come from our group. Somebody could post a low one, and we’re going to have to do the same thing.”

Stricker got off to a roaring start with birdies on six holes on the front nine, and at one point held a three-shot lead before Broadhurst closed strong with birdies on three of the final four holes.

“I stayed patient, and obviously Steve was going mad around the front nine,” Broadhurst said. “Didn’t follow that all the way around because the scoreboards are only every other hole on the front nine, but back nine I sort of knew what was going on, and just sort of stuck to the task, really. Try to make it a competition (Sunday) because (Stricker) was getting away from everyone. We don’t want that come Sunday. We want some sort of competitive
day, hopefully.”

Leonard broke the course record Friday, but struggled to find any consistency Saturday. He had just one birdie on the front nine, missed a very makable putt for a bogey on 14 and ended up at just 3-under for the round.

“As good as I hit the ball yesterday, I think anything was going to feel kind of substandard and off. But I didn’t really play that great, but I hung in there and hit a couple nice wedges, a couple really nice up-and-downs to kind of keep Steve from getting too far out in front, from me at least,” Leonard said. “I’m pleased. Look, I think I’m playing in the last group. I’m a couple shots back. I know Steve has been on a tear. I played with Paul Broadhurst today. He played incredible golf. But I’m just looking forward to being in contention, having a chance.”

Three other players are four shots back at -11, while another is at -10.