June 24, 2000

Mock Stretches Lead in Amateur

Kevin Mock of Tampa fired a 1-under par 71 Saturday to stand at 5-under par after three rounds.

After leading by one at the halfway point, Mock leads by two over Clearwater's Brendan Takacs. Takacs shot an even-par 72 in the third round.

"My short game saved me today," the 22-year old Mock said. "I had a good start by holing a 20-yard bunker shot on the first hole, and then I made a ridiculous 85-footer from the front of the green on number four."

Mock added birdies on the 10th and 13th hole, but also had bogeys on holes 5, 6 and 16.

Takacs, who is just 18 years old, said he "putted like a 3-year old." He made 4 birdies and 4 bogeys in his up-and-down round.

Three veterans are standing in third place at even-par and are poised at making a run at the two youngsters. Buddy Alexander of Gainesville fired a 4-under par 68 and Joe Alfieri of Lutz shot a 3-under par 69 to race up the leaderboard. Mark Leetzow of Sarasota shot a 1-over 73.

Alexander, the head golf coach at the University of Florida and 1986 U.S. Amateur champion, had two birdies and an eagle in his round of 68. "It was putting early and ball striking later," Alexander said. "After the 7th hole, the putter decided you other guys (clubs) are going to have to do some work."

Alfieri had 6 birdies and 3 bogeys during his round including a stretch of 5 birdies in 7 holes. "I hit the ball pretty solid," Alfieri, the 1999 Florida State Player of the Year said. "I just had two bad swings that ended with a bogey."

Leetzow, who was tied for the lead after the first round, said he is just pleased to be in the hunt. "1 haven't been playing a lot of golf, so I have been fighting the driver," he said. "I always think even-par is going to be somewhere near the top at the State Amateur." The final round begins Sunday morning at 8:00 a.m. A trophy presentation will be held immediately following play. The champion receives a crystal vase as well as his name permanently inscribed on the Clarence Camp Trophy.

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