Crane holds on to lead

Ben Crane stayed on top of the leaderboard at the US Bank Championship in Cincinnati despite carding his first bogeys of the tournament in the third round.

Ben Crane stayed on top of the leaderboard at the US Bank Championship in Cincinnati despite carding his first bogeys of the tournament in the third round.

Crane had two slip-ups but still managed a six-under-par 64 to take a two-stroke lead into the final 18 holes.

He is on 19 under at 191, ahead of second placed Scott Verplank, who also shot six under in the third round.

The pair had been forced to complete their second rounds on Saturday morning after darkness halted play at the Brown Deer Park Gold Club on Friday night.

Rain hit the third round and play was again suspended for nearly four hours but Crane, who won the 2003 BellSouth Classic and tied for second at this year’s Booz Allen Classic, birdied three of the final five holes to keep his lead.

Kenny Perry, who won here in 2003, and Chris Smith are tied for third on 196.

Perry also carded a 64, while Smith shot a bogey-free round of 65.

After consecutive rounds of 64, Jeff Sluman ended the day in fifth place following an even-par third round.

Defending champion Carlos Franco’s hopes of becoming the first two-time champ to successfully defend his title dwindled after carding a one-under 69 to slip down to a tie for 56th place.

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