Masters Preview: Scheffler, Morikawa, and a Clutch of Contenders Lead Going into Final Round

With a one-stroke advantage heading into the final round, Scottie Scheffler, the no. 1 golfer in the world, is looking to defend his Masters title. The pressures of competing were too much for him to handle in 2022, but now, with a child on the way, he seems to be handling things much better.

Scheffler took the solo lead after chipping in for birdie on the 1st hole and then making a 32-foot birdie putt on the 3rd hole to move to 8 under. But a double-bogey on the 10th hole where his approach shot bounced off the green and into bushes and a bogey on the 11th when he missed a 5-foot par putt caused him to stumble. However, he regained his composure and made an eagle on the 13th to get back to 6 under. He eventually finished the round at 1 under 71, maintaining his lead by one stroke.

Two-time major championship winner Collin Morikawa is 1 stroke back after carding a 3-under 69. Max Homa is 2 back at 5 under, followed by Sweden's Ludvig ¯berg at 4 under and LIV Golf League captain Bryson DeChambeau at 3 under. Scheffler's wife won't be with him in Augusta on Sunday morning. She's back at their home in Dallas, expecting their first child sometime later this month.Scheffler didn't want to be alone in his house this weekend, so he invited friends over for breakfast before the third round. He planned to be with them again Saturday night.

Two years ago, Scheffler's meteoric rise from a golfer who couldn't win to one who couldn't stop winning took a toll on him. "Going into Sunday, Meredith and I were just a little bit emotional about what was going on at the time because our lives were changing at a very rapid pace," Scheffler said Saturday. "Now, I think we have settled more into where our lives are at, and right now, the most exciting thing is not winning the Masters -- it's a baby coming pretty soon. Things are a lot different now, and I feel like we've both matured."

This story unfolds as the PGA Tour takes a firm stance against the LIV Golf league, banning 17 golfers for joining the rival league.

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