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Americans Dominate Leaderboard Through Three Rounds Of PGA Championship

A pair of relative unknowns in the world of professional golf, Americans Jason Dufner and Brendan Steele, are atop the leaderboard after three rounds of the 2011 PGA Championship at the Atlanta Athletic Club in Johns, Creek, Ga.

2011 PGA Championship
2011 PGA Championship

Steve Stricker, the leader after the opening round of the 93rd PGA Championship at the Atlanta Athletic Club in Johns Creek, Ga., is back within striking distance of the lead after shooting a one-under-par 69 on Saturday, leaving him three-back of co-leaders Brendan Steele and Jason Dufner, who are at seven-under 203 through three rounds of play. Steele is playing in his first major championship.

Dufner, 34, the second-round co-leader with Keegan Bradley, had not made a tournament cut since May. He had a couple of three-putt bogies that knocked him out of the lead, but rebounded with back-to-back birdies on holes 15 and 16. Dufner lives just two hours away from where this year's PGA Championship is being played, in Auburn, Ala.

Bradley is in third place, one shot back of the leaders, after shooting a 69 on Saturday. Scott Verplank matched Bradley's 69 and is in fourth place after three rounds with a cumulative score of 205.

Gary Woodland, the former Kansas Jayhawk golfer who lives in Topeka, was one-over for the third round and that's where he is for the tournament after shooting even par 140 over the opening two rounds. His one-over 71 on Saturday, however, dropped him from a tie for 17th on the leaderboard into a tie for 30th heading into Sunday's final round.

American David Toms shot the low score of the day, a five-under 65 that left him at five-under 208 and just two back of Steele and Dufner. Toms' low third-round score gave him the greatest movement on the day. The 44-year-old pro started the round tied for 53rd and finished seventh, a difference of 46 places on the leaderboard.

"Obviously, it will take a great round tomorrow," said Toms, a 13-time PGA Tour winner and winner of this tournament in 2001, the last time it was played at the Atlanta Athletic Club. "That was my goal of the day, to have a good round. I didn't know it was going to be a great round," he said.

German Martin Kaymer, who won the 2010 PGA Championship at Whistling Straits in Kohler, Wis., in a playoff with American Bubba Watson, missed the cut in this year's Championship. Watson is currently tied for 37th at two-over 212.