Fred Couples shot a 5-under 65 for a share of the U.S. Senior Open lead, feeding off a raucous hometown crowd hoping the native son can win his first U.S. Golf Association championship.
Couples matched Bernhard Langer (68) at 5 under at tree-lined Sahalee Country Club in Sammamish, Wash., with Langer birdieing the final hole to pull even. They are the only players under par after three rounds.
Couples shot a 4-under 31 on the front nine, making birdies at Nos. 2, 5, 7 and 9 and holing a bunker shot on the sixth to save par. He added a birdie at the 16th to post the best round of the week.
Langer had a streak of 20 holes without a bogey snapped at the 12th but rebounded with the birdie at No. 18.
They might have the stage to themselves Sunday. Couples and Langer were five shots clear of Chien Soon Lu (68) and Tom Kite (69). A charge from the back of the field seems unlikely.
"If we shoot even par or 1 or 2 under it's going to be very hard for anyone to get there," Langer said.