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Garcia's round grinds to halt

A 67 could have felt a lot better if not for the final two holes.

By BOB HARIG
Published May 13, 2007


PONTE VEDRA BEACH - The final score was 67, but it sure didn't feel as good as it looked for Sergio Garcia.

The Spaniard, above, made a nice comeback Saturday and was threatening to contend today at the Players.

He made four birdies on the back nine, then missed a makeable birdie of less than 10 feet at the par-3 17th before hitting his second shot in the water at 18.

"It's a shame, " said Garcia, 27, who has not won for two years on the PGA Tour. "At least I put a good round out there and gave myself a chance. Unfortunately, I'm going to have to shoot two shots better than if I had made par at the last."

Garcia made double bogey at 18 when he pulled his 6-iron shot into the water. "I just got a little quick and unfortunately didn't cut it."

The 6 dropped him into a tie for 13th, six behind leader Sean O'Hair.

 

No joke

Tiger Woods showed up on the driving range wearing a hard hat, poking fun at playing partner Henrik Stenson, who broke a club in anger Friday, the clubhead flying off and catching a cameraman on the head.

But at end of the day, Woods, above, was not in a laughing, or talking, mood.

He fell out of contention with 1-over 73, his fifth straight round over par at the TPC Sawgrass.

"He was having a rough day, " said Stenson, who shot 66. "As everybody knows he hasn't played his best. ... Of course he's frustrated. But he's allowed to have a bad week. I don't think everybody realized he's human."

Woods was at 5-over 221, the seventh-highest 54-hole score in relation to par in his career. The highest was 12 over at the 1996 U.S. Open, when he was an amateur.

 

Double double

Hunter Mahan made double eagle Friday at the 11th hole and Peter Lonard did it on the second Saturday, hitting a 5-iron from 220 yards. "My heart rate went up a hundred beats a minute, " said Lonard, two off the lead. "The reaction sort of said it all. But I didn't believe it until I actually pulled it out of the hole." It was his first double eagle and the tournament's first two.

 

Around Sawgrass

Phil Mickelson has played nine Sunday rounds at the Players but never shot a final round in the 60s. His best was 2-under 70 in 1995. His best finish is a tie for third in 2004. ... Mickelson was one back despite erratic driving. He has hit just 20 of 42 fairways (47.6 percent), tied for 74th in the field. ... Jeff Quinney's 64 was one off the course and tournament record set by Fred Couples in 1992 and matched by Greg Norman in 1994.