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Saturday's Last Word

What could make our PGA Championship coverage even better? How about one story that recaps all the best stories we published throughout the entire day on Saturday? Here's our Last Word from the links.

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Some semblance of order is finally coming into the light heading into Sunday's final round. (Getty Images)

KOHLER, Wis. -- Whistling Straits was there for the taking. So is this PGA Championship.

Nick Watney took over the lead Saturday with two quick birdies and never let up until he had a 6-under 66, giving him a three-shot lead over Dustin Johnson and Rory McIlroy in a strong showing by golf's next generation.

When three long days along Lake Michigan finally ended, the contenders were short on major experience.

Watney, who had to scramble for a bogey on the 18th hole after an aggressive play, practically seemed like an old man compared with some of the players chasing him.

Johnson is 26, seasoned slightly by his memorable meltdown at Pebble Beach in the U.S. Open. He found enough accuracy to go with his awesome power for a 67 to work his way into the final group in a major for the second time this year. Johnson was tied with McIlroy, the 21-year-old from Northern Ireland who also had a 67 and looks poised to deliver early on his promise of Europe's next big star.

None of the top six on the leaderboard have ever won a major.

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THE YOUNG AND THE READY DOMINATE 54-HOLE LEADERBOARD

By Helen Ross, PGATOUR.COM Chief of Correspondents

KOHLER, Wis. -- A week ago, everyone was talking about all the international players who were winning PGA TOUR events. The final tally was 11 of the last 17 tournaments, to be exact.

As the season's final major championship winds to a conclusion at Whistling Straits on Sunday, though, there's a different storyline. Two of them, in fact.

Seven of the top 10 players on the leaderboard at the 92nd PGA Championship have yet to win a major championship. And five of those have yet to hit the big 3-0.

Players in their 20s have won 13 PGA TOUR events this year, so it's not really anything new. But it speaks to the tenacity as much as the talent, and there are only going to be more to come. Maybe as soon as Sunday.

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POOR PUTTING MEANS OPPORTUNITIES LOST FOR WOODS

KOHLER, Wis. -- Tiger Woods stood, hand on hip, and glared. Yet another putt that refused to drop, yet another birdie opportunity wasted.

After pulling within five strokes of the lead Saturday morning at the PGA Championship, all the moves Woods made in the third round were in the wrong direction. He had to close birdie-birdie just to stay even for the day and, at 3-under 213, trails leader Nick Watney by double digits -- 10 strokes, to be exact.

"Ironically enough, today I hit the ball better than I did the first two days. I made nothing," Woods said. "You have to putt. I stuffed it in there early on the first few holes and made nothing, and also had a few other putts on the front nine. No matter how good you hit it, you've still got to make putts. I just didn't do that today."

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LIANG'S NEW SWING GOOD ENOUGH TO SET COURSE RECORD

By Stan Awtrey, PGATOUR.COM Contributor

KOHLER, Wis. -- His old swing was good enough to earn Wen-Chong Liang an invitation to the 2007 PGA Championship and help him become the No. 1-ranked player on the Asian Tour. His new and improved swing was good enough Saturday to set a competitive course record at Whistling Straits and thrust him into contention at the 92nd PGA Championship.

Liang, a native of China, began on the back nine and birdied five holes to make the turn in 31. His momentum slowed a bit on the front, but he still finished in 33, giving him a 64. It was the best score recorded at the PGA Championship since Thomas Bjorn shot a 63 in 2005 at Baltusrol.

"After I made the cut yesterday, I feel much more relaxed," Liang said through interpreter David Lee. "I was able to play the back nine and it started well. So that started building the confidence. Also today the driving, the putting and all very well, and so it makes the whole round very good."

His swing was rebuilt with the help of Australian coach Kel Llewellyn, who changed it from a baseball-type swing to a more orthodox golf swing. Llewellyn completely broke down Liang's swing and started over, giving him a new stance, new grip, new takeaway, and new downswing. The only thing that stayed the same was the way Liang wears his hat.

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ELKINGTON RIDES RED-HOT BACK NINE RIGHT BACK TO RELEVANCE

By Stan Awtrey, PGATOUR.COM Contributor

KOHLER, Wis. -- Maybe Steve Elkington isn't finished after all.

The 47-year-old Australian, winner of the 1995 PGA Championship, only has status as a past champion on the PGA TOUR, which means he's has had to rely on the kindness of sponsors to get in a lot of events this season. He's managed to compete, but hasn't exactly been a regular contender, with only two top-10 finishes.

Still, there's something about the PGA Championship that seems to get his motor in gear. On Saturday, Elkington shot a 5-under 67 at Whistling Straits, which moved him into a tie for eighth entering the final round.

Elkington began the third round at 3-under 141 after rounds of 71 and 70. Playing with Tiger Woods, Elkington didn't seem to have anything special going, as he turned in 36. But things started to happen on the back nine, as Elkington birdied No. 9, 10, 11 and 12. A bogey at 13 was only a speed bump, as he tacked on birdies at No. 16 and 17 to score 31 on the backside.

The last time Elkington shot 67 at the PGA Championship was 1996.

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