By Helen Ross, PGATOUR.COM Chief of Correspondents
MARANA, Ariz. -- Here are recaps from third-round matches on Saturday at the World Golf Championships-Accenture Match Play Championship:
Garrigus def. Jacobson, 3 and 1
At 7,791 yards, the Ritz Carlton Golf Club at Dove Mountain is right down Robert Garrigus' alley and he continued to build confidence with his third-round win over Fredrik Jacobson.
Garrigus won the par-5 second hole with a 22-inch birdie putt and the fifth with a 7-footer. A bogey at the sixth hole gave one back but Garrigus made birdies at Nos. 8 and 9 to make the turn 3 up.
Jacobson mounted a charge on the back nine, making three birdies in succession starting at No. 11 to square the match. But Garrigus answered with a 6-foot brirdie at No. 14 and then drove the green at the 15th and made a 6-footer for eagle there to go 1 up again.
Jacobson lipped out a 5-footer for birdie at the 16th hole that would have pulled him to 1 down. An adventure in the desert with Garrigus safely on the green in two prompted Jacobson to concede the 17th and the match.
Garrigus, who is playing in his first Accenture Match Play Championship, says he likes the format.
"I make a lot of birdies, and if the guy I'm playing with doesn't make a lot of birdies, he's in trouble because I'm going to make some," he said. "I missed a lot of short putts today, too. I stuffed it on almost every single hole, put a lot of pressure on Freddie.
"It was a great match. He came back. I made a couple bad swings on 11, 12 and 13, he birdied all of them. ... It's just the nature of the beast. I make a lot of birdies, and if I hit it straight, I'm not going to make many mistakes, so it's definitely a good format for me.
SCORECARD STATS: Garrigus made six birdies, an eagle and a bogey. Jacobson made three birdies and no bogeys.
HOLES WON: Garrigus won seven holes. Jacobson won four holes.
NEXT OPPONENT: Matt Kuchar, who beat Nicolas Colsaerts 4 and 3.
"Matt is very consistent," Garrigus said. "I'm going to have to play well. I'll probably have to shoot 6 , 7 , 8 under again because I'm swinging it well and rolling it well, so it should be a lot of fun."
Kuchar def. Colsaerts, 4 and 3
Matt Kuchar birdied three of his first four holes and never looked back as he beat Nicolas Colsaerts.
Kuchar was 2 up after that early run, then won the seventh hole with a par and got up and down from beside the green at the par-5 eighth. His lead at the turn, though, was 3 up after he couldn't save par at No. 9.
The two opponents halved the next five holes with two birdies and three pars. When Colsaerts missed the green at the 15th hole along with a 9-footer for par, Kuchar had the win.
"I feel really good," Kuchar said. "Got off to a great start, birdied 1, 3, 4, and kept things going really well, put the pressure on. I tried not to give any holes away. Excited about the way I'm playing and looking forward to this afternoon."
Kuchar has reached the consolation final and quarterfinals the last two years. His record is now 12-3.
SCORECARD STATS: Kuchar made six birdies and two bogeys. Colsaerts made two birdies and two bogeys.
HOLES WON: Kuchar won six holes. Colsaerts won two holes.
NEXT OPPONENT: Robert Garrigus, who beat Fredrik Jacobson 3 and 1
Stricker def. Piercy 1 up
Steve Stricker is one of the PGA TOUR's most understated stars. But the veteran showed a flair for the dramatic on Saturday when he birdied the last two holes to come from behind and beat Scott Piercy 1 up.
Stricker, who turned 46 on Saturday, two-putted the par-5 eighth from 33 feet for the first birdie before he drained a putt from 31 for the win. That was the only time Stricker led in the hard-fought match that started on No. 10.
"It was a tough putt," Stricker said. "It was downhill, downgrain, and he had five or six feet left, and I was just making sure I wasn't going to give myself the same comeback or so. I wanted to make sure I had good speed, but I had a pretty good feel for the line. ... But you don't expect to make a putt like that.
"We both played great, and that's match play. He didn't make a bogey today and neither did I, and neither one of us really deserve to go home. But I'm very excited to be moving on."
Piercy grabbed a 1-up lead three different times during the match and each time Stricker managed to even the proceedings. It took Stricker two holes the first two times Piercy led and four holes the third but he ended up making the putts when it counted.
SCORECARD STATS: Stricker made eight birdies and no bogeys. Piercy made seven birdies and no bogeys. The Accenture Match Play Championship rookie has not made a bogey in his last two matches, in fact.
HOLES WON: Stricker won four holes. Piercy won three holes.
NEXT OPPONENT: Ian Poulter, who beat Tim Clark 5 and 3.
"It's going to be tough," Stricker said. "He's a good match play player. ... But I'm playing well. I like what I'm doing. I like how I'm hitting it. I'm making a lot of putts. I can't give him any holes. That's the key to this match play, I think, is just stay in every hole and make the other guy beat you."
Poulter def. Clark, 5 and 3
Ian Poulter continued to steamroll his way toward a shot at a second Accenture Match Play Championship title with his decisive win over Tim Clark.
Poulter never trailed in the match, which started on the back nine. He took control and a 3-up lead at the turn after Clark closed out the back nine with three straight bogeys.
The Englishman, who won this tournament in 2010 and reached the consolation finals in 2005, then won the third hole with another par and closed out the match with a 7-footer for birdie at the sixth hole.
"It was job done today," Poulter said. "I think my short game was on today. I missed a few greens in the wrong spots, but managed to get up and down. And when I hit greens, I had great birdie opportunities. That's always tough when you make so many pars and make a few birdies to obviously be beaten, and I was pretty pleased with that today."
Poulter's Accenture Match Play Championship record improved to 21-9 with the win. He has not made a bogey in his last two matches.
SCORECARD STATS: Poulter made three birdies and no bogeys. Clark made three birdies and five bogeys.
HOLES WON: Poulter won six holes. Clark won one hole.
NEXT OPPONENT: Steve Stricker, who beat Scott Piercy 1 up.
Simpson def. Fernandez-Castano, 2 up
Webb Simpson needed 18 holes to finally put away Gonzalo Fernandez-Castano, who nearly erased a 4-down deficit on the back nine.
Simpson was already 4 up after 11 holes in this match that started on the back nine. But the Spaniard launched a comeback -- winning the third hole when Simpson made bogey and the fifth and eighth with birdies to send the match to one last hole.
Simpson needed to halve to win, and he two-putted for par as Fernandez-Castano took three on the way to a bogey. This is just Simpson's second apperance at Dove Mountain, and it's the first time he's advanced past the first round.
"I played great for the most part," Simpson said. "I just kind of played super sloppy coming in. I made a couple birdies, but I just played sloppy.
"So for me I'm going to really dwell on my first nine holes and just try to keep playing well. Can't make those mistakes out here."
SCORECARD STATS: Simpson made five birdies, 11 pars and three bogeys and a double-bgoey. Fernandez-Castano made five birdies, 10 pars and three bogeys.
HOLES WON: Simpson won six holes. Fernandez-Castano won four holes.
McDowell def. Lowry 3 and 2
Shane Lowry became the first No. 64 seed to advance into the round of 16, but that is where it ended for the Irishman.
Lowry, who upset world No. 1 Rory McIlroy in the first round, ran into a red-hot Graeme McDowell on Saturday morning -- McDowell reeled off five birdies on the front nine to quickly seize the match.
Lowry took the early lead with a 10-footer for birdie at the par-5 second. But he gave that edge back -- and then some --with bogeys at the next two holes, and then McDowell went to work.
The Northern Irishman won the fifth, seventh and ninth holes with birdies to go 4 up at the turn. The two halved the next five holes with four pars and a birdie and even after a rare McDowell mistake at No. 15 it was just a matter of time.
"With the possibility of another 18 holes this afternoon, I was very keen to get the match out of the way as soon as I could, especially when I was 3 and 4 up," McDowell said.
"But Shane is a gritty competitor, very difficult to get the poker face on and really knuckle down and play Shane, being a good friend like he is. When he hit that pin with the flop shot on 13, I was licking my chops there thinking I had a chance to go 5 up with five to play, and all of a sudden I found myself down 16 and really not wanting to go down much past that."
SCORECARD STATS: McDowell made six birdies, nine pars and a bogey. Lowry had three birdies, 11 pars and two bogeys.
HOLES WON: McDowell won five holes. Lowry won two holes.
NEXT UP: McDowell plays Jason Day, who beat Bubba Watson 4 and 3.
Day def. Watson, 4 and 3
This was a battle of two of the PGA TOUR's resident bombers, but Jason Day was ready to take advantage of Bubba Watson's struggles on the greens.
Day's win was his second blowout of the week. He never trailed in the match after winning three of the first six holes with two birdies and a par to go 2 up.
Watson birdied the seventh to cut into the Aussie's lead but Day responded with a two-putt birdie from 43 feet at the par-5 eighth and went 3 up at the turn when his opponent bogeyed the ninth.
Watson and Day traded wins with birdies at the 12th and 13th. But Watson got into trouble in the desert at the driveable par-4 15th and eventually conceded the hole to end the match.
Day advances to the Accenture Match Play Championship quarterfinals for the second time in three tries at this event.
"It was just really steady golf," Day said. "Bubba gave me a couple early on and I just tried to hold that lead, and I tried to extend it. I think I was 4 under through 14 holes, so overall very, very happy with how I played. Like I said before, it was just steady."
SCORECARD STATS: Day made six birdies and nine pars in 15 holes. Watson had 11 pars, three birdies and a bogey.
HOLES WON: Day won seven holes. Watson won three holes.
NEXT UP: Day faces Graeme McDowell, who defeated Shane Lowry 3 and 2.
Mahan def. Kaymer, 5 and 4
This was a battle of two players who have a wealth of match play experience -- and each were trying to go to the Accenture Match Play finals for the second time. Kaymer was second to Luke Donald in 2011, and Mahan won in 2012.
This match was over almost before it started, though.
Kaymer went 2 down after just four holes after he failed to birdie either of the opening par-5s at Dove Mountain. Mahan birdied them both, then birdied three consecutive par 4s starting at No. 6 to take a 5-up lead. The match was over when both played parred the 14th.
Mahan has now won nine consecutive matches at Dove Mountain, dating back to 2011. Kaymer was the last player to beat the American, ousting Mahan 2 and 1 in the third round in 2011.
The last time Mahan trailed in a match was the sixth hole in the first round a year ago, a span of 133 holes.
"Well, it's strange, I've always gotten off to good starts and get some leads and been hitting it well," Mahan said. "If you hit fairways and greens, you know you're going to put pressure on your guy. It's definitely nice to get a lead and that's the goal for everybody, but to do it, it's a good feeling for sure."
SCORECARD STATS: Mahan made six birdies and seven pars in 14 holes. Kaymer had 1 birdie, 1 eagle and 12 pars.
HOLES WON: Mahan won six holes. Kaymer won one hole.
NEXT UP: Mahan plays Webb Simpson, who beat Gonzalo Fernandez-Castano 2 up.