Pinckney remains on top at Q School

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La Quinta, CA ( - Scott Pinckney carded a 4-under 68 on Monday to remain on top of the leaderboard of the Tour Qualifying Tournament.

Pinckney, who posted his fifth straight round in the 60s, finished 90 holes at 25-under-par 335.

"I played good today and handled the pressure pretty well," said Pinckney. "Tomorrow is hugely important. Leaving here with a 'W' would be big, knowing you're fully exempt and don't have to worry about the reranks."

Zack Fischer fired an 8-under 64 to vault into second place at 23-under 337, while Jimmy Gunn (70) owned sole possession of third at minus-22.

Tony Finau (67) sat in fourth place at 21-under, a shot ahead of both Sung Joon Park (66) and third-round leader Steve Saunders (71).

Andy Pope (71) and Carlos Ortiz (69) shared seventh place at 18-under 342.

Each of those players played on the TPC Stadium Course at PGA West, but the tournament is also being contested on the Jack Nicklaus Course.

Gunn opened the day with a birdie at the first to meet Pinckney atop the leaderboard at 21-under, but Pinckney answered with a birdie at the second to reclaim the lead for good.

Gunn bogeyed the fourth to fall two strokes off the pace and after both Gunn and Pinckney birdied the fifth, Pinckney rolled in back-to-back gains at the seventh and eighth to open up a 4-stroke lead at 25-under.

Gunn later birdied the 12th to cut Pinckney's advantage to three before Pinckney bogeyed the 14th to drop his advantage to just two.

Pinckney parred his next three holes before closing with a birdie at the 18th to finish at 25-under. Gunn parred his final six holes to remain three strokes off the pace.

Fischer, meanwhile, started to make his way up the leaderboard with five birdies during an outward 31.

He picked up another shot at the 12th to move to 21-under, and later poured in consecutive gains at the 16th and 17th to jump into second place. He parred the last end at 23-under and head into the final round within striking distance of the lead.

NOTES: Pinckney has two PGA Tour starts, and they were both in majors as he qualified for the 2011 U.S. Open and the 2012 British Open Championships. He missed the cut at both events ... Pinckney finished in 165th place at last year's Q School ... The medalist this week earns fully exempt status on the Tour, while those who finish from second through 10th and ties are exempted through the first two reshuffles. Those finishing 11th through 45th are exempt through the first reshuffle.