Northern Trust Open 2013: Underdogs Who Will Make Major Push on Final Day

Mike Moraitis@@michaelmoraitisAnalyst IFebruary 17, 2013

PACIFIC PALISADES, CA - FEBRUARY 16:  Sergio Garcia of Spain watches his tee shot on the second hole during the third round of the Northern Trust Open at the Riviera Country Club on February 16, 2013 in Pacific Palisades, California.  (Photo by Harry How/Getty Images)
Harry How/Getty Images

After Day 3 of the Northern Trust Open, Bill Haas (-12) is the leader going into Sunday after posting an improbable score of seven-under on Saturday.

He is currently three strokes ahead of his nearest competitors Charl Schwartzel (-9), Webb Simpson (-9) and John Merrick (-9).

While those three men are the favorites, some underdogs have shown they can make a strong push and still have a shot to win if they can get some help from the top players on the final day of this tournament.

Let's take a look at some of the men who fit the bill.


Sergio Garcia (-6)

Garcia started off the tournament strong, but he has since waned a bit and fallen on the leaderboard.

The spaniard's first day was no doubt a success after an opening-round 65, but on Day 2, Garcia faltered and shot a 73 that sent him backwards.

On Day 3, Garcia recovered nicely and finished with a 69, which will give him some momentum and put him in contention on Sunday.

Clearly, Garcia has already shown he can dominate this course, so if he can have a repeat round of 65 like he did on Day 1, he can pull out the victory.


Josh Teater (-7)

Teater is having one of the more consistent showings throughout this tournament.

After starting off relatively slow with an opening-round 70, Teater has improved his game in the last two days after shooting a 68 in each.

That has left the American in striking distance heading into the final day, and he could conceivably take home the title on Sunday.

It will take at least another round of 68 to give him a chance, but maybe Teater can better his score from the last two rounds in order to put himself at the top of the leaderboard.


Hunter Mahan (-6)

Mahan has gotten progressively stronger each day of this tournament.

After shooting an opening-round 70, Mahan has improved one stroke during both Friday and Saturday's rounds.

Mahan shot a 69 on Friday and a 68 on Saturday, which puts him six shots back of the leader.

With his evolving success on this course, there's no telling just how well Mahan can do on Sunday. If he goes on to shoot his best round of the tournament on the final day, he could very well find himself in the thick of things.