Villegas (63) sizzles as Big Three fizzle
They have combined for 121 victories and 19 majors. But when Tiger Woods, Phil Mickelson and Vijay Singh played together Friday for the first time on the PGA Tour, they went a combined three over par.
On a day when Camilo Villegas shot a career-low 63 at the Deutsche Bank Championship, the biggest buzz at Norton, Mass., three of the biggest names in golf delivered some memorable moments they would rather forget.
Mickelson took a triple bogey on the ninth hole at TPC Boston that spoiled an otherwise solid round of 70. Woods took three shots to get out of the bunker on the 298-yard fourth hole and made double bogey on the way to a 72.
Singh set the tone for the threesome by four-putting from 15 feet on the opening hole. He shot 74. It was the second straight week in the PGA Tour playoffs that Singh had a four-putt double bogey.
Asked how he would describe the day, Woods said: “Over.”
Woods hit his second shot into the water on the par-five second hole, and combined with his double bogey on No. 4, was at three over through four holes and already 10 shots out of the lead.
“It’s not like I haven’t been in this position before,” Woods said. “I kept saying, ‘I basically have 68 holes to make it up.’ ”
Villegas had a two-shot lead over former Masters champion Mike Weir and Ryan Moore, and Barclays winner Steve Stricker continued his solid play with a 67 that helped his chances of staying atop the playoff standings.
The Deutsche Bank is most critical for Weir, who needs to finish at least fifth to have any chance of getting to the BMW Championship next week.
The only other time Woods, Mickelson and Singh played together was two years ago at the PGA Grand Slam of Golf, an exhibition for the four major champions of the year (Singh got in as an alternate). This was the first time on the PGA Tour, courtesy of a new playoff system that groups players the first two rounds based on their position in the standings.
“It was a fun day,” Mickelson said. “We just didn’t get out of it what we wanted.”
Sherri Steinhauer shot a six-under 66 to top the LPGA State Farm Classic leaderboard for the second straight day, while defending champion Annika Sorenstam had a 65 to pull within three strokes at Springfield, Ill.
Steinhauer had seven birdies and one bogey to get to 11-under 133 at the halfway point at Panther Creek Country Club. Christina Kim was two strokes back after a 66.
Sorenstam had the low round of the day to move into third place at eight under.
Morris Hatalsky and Monday qualifier Bruce Vaughan shot seven-under 65s to share the first-round lead in the Wal-Mart First Tee Open at Pebble Beach.
Hatalsky, a three-time winner on the PGA Tour who has four Champions Tour victories, had eight birdies -- including a 30-footer on No. 8 -- and one bogey.
Vaughan, who played one full season on the PGA Tour (1996), had nine birdies and two bogeys in his first tournament round ever on the Del Monte Golf Course.