Friday's Golf Capsules
Saturday, March 24, 2012
ORLANDO, Fla. (AP) — Tiger Woods is in a place he hasn’t been in 30 months — atop the leaderboard on the PGA Tour going into the weekend.
With alarming control, Woods putted for birdie on every hole and made short work of the par 5s Friday at Bay Hill for a 7-under 65, giving him a share of the lead with Charlie Wi after two rounds of the Arnold Palmer Invitational.
Wi, the 54-hole leader at Pebble Beach this year, rolled in a 25-foot birdie putt on his last hole for a 68 to join Woods at 10-under 134.
Former U.S. Open champion Graeme McDowell had an eagle-par-birdie finish for a 63, while Jason Dufner extended his solid play on the Florida swing with a 69. They were one shot behind at 135.
Woods last had the 36-hole lead in any tour event at the Australian Open in November, and he tied for third. On the PGA Tour, go all the way back to the Tour Championship in September 2009 to find the last time he was atop the leaderboard going into the weekend.
It looks even more ominous at Bay Hill, where Woods is a six-time winner.
Woods at least is in better shape than he was two weeks ago. His future looked as muddled as ever when Woods was taken off the golf course in a cart at Doral because of soreness and swelling in his left Achilles tendon, the same injury that forced him to miss three months and two majors a year ago. One week later, he was practicing at Augusta National. Now, he’s the player everyone is chasing on the weekend.
CARLSBAD, Calif. (AP) — Top-ranked Yani Tseng shot a 4-under 68 to open a two-stroke lead over Se Ri Pak after the second round of the Kia Classic.
Tseng, tied for the first-round lead after a 67, had a 9-under 135 total on La Costa’s Legends Course.
The 23-year-old Taiwanese star won the LPGA Founders Cup on Sunday in Phoenix for her 14th LPGA Tour title and second in four events this year. She led the tour last season with seven victories — including major victories in the LPGA Championship and Women’s British Open — and finished the year with 12 worldwide titles.
Pak had a 66. Jiyai Shin, Alison Walshe, Jodi Ewart and Caroline Hedwall were 5 under. Walshe shot 66, Ewart 69, Shin 71, and Hedwall 72.
Michelle Wie missed the cut with rounds of 77 and 79.
MISSISSIPPI GULF RESORT CLASSIC
SAUCIER, Miss. (AP) — Tom Pernice Jr. topped the leaderboard at 7 under through 12 holes when first-round play in the soggy Mississippi Gulf Resort Classic was suspended because of darkness.
The 52-year-old Pernice is making his first Champions Tour of the year after playing eight PGA Tour events this season. Chien Soon Lu and David Eger — the winner of the inaugural tournament in 2010 — were a stroke back. Lu played 16 holes, and Eger completed 15.
Only a handful of players completed their rounds because the start was delayed more than four hours after more than 9 inches of rain fell on Fallen Oak in 36 hours.
Fred Couples was 3 under through 12 holes.
Defending champion Tom Lehman was even par through 11.
HASSAN II TROPHY
AGADIR, Morocco (AP) — Wales’ Phillip Price shot a 6-under 66 to take a one-stroke lead in the suspended second round of the European Tour’s Hassan II Trophy.
Price had a 10-under 134 total at Golf du Palais Royal, the Robert Trent Jones Sr.-designed course that sits inside the walls of the Royal Palace of Agadir.
Spain’s Jose Manuel Lara was at 9 under after a 65.
Strong wind and thunder delayed the start of the round 5 1/2 hours.
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