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GOLF ROUNDUP Sunday's events



Published: Mon, September 4, 2006 @ 12:00 a.m.



PGA Deutsche Bank

NORTON, Mass. -- All that hard work finally paid off Sunday for Vijay Singh, who shot the best round of his PGA Tour career and put himself in position to end another streak by Tiger Woods at the Deutsche Bank Championship. Singh played his first five holes in 5 under par, then finished with three straight birdies for a 10-under 61 to set the course record at the TPC of Boston and build a three-shot lead over Woods, who shot 67. Two years ago, Singh went toe-to-toe with Woods in the final round on Labor Day and beat him by three shots to rise to No. 1, ending Woods' record 264 consecutive weeks atop the world ranking. Woods now has won four straight times on the PGA Tour, and Singh is poised to end that streak. "It would be good," Singh said. "I'm not going to be thinking about his streak or beating him. I've been playing long enough to know that you don't go out there and worry about the guys who are playing with you. You worry about your own game and see what happens." There were no worries Sunday. Even more impressive than his score were the miserable conditions in which Singh shot his 61. A light rain at the start of the third round never let up, coating the fairways with a thin layer of moisture, making it difficult to keep clubs dry. With little wind, however, Singh took dead aim at the flags and was never too far off. "This is one of the worst conditions you want to play golf in because it gets everything wet," Singh said. "I just kept on plodding." And he kept making birdies, finishing at 11-under 202. Woods had a chance to get closer, if not catch him over the final two hours after Singh was done. Woods missed four birdie putts inside 15 feet on the back nine, including putts of 10 feet on No. 15 and 8 feet on No. 17. He looked out of sync over the closing holes, letting his hand fly from the club even on shots that turned out well. There was frustration even when he reached the par-5 18th in two, setting up a two-putt birdie that put him in the final group with Singh. Justin Rose also birdied the 18th for a 69, leaving him tied with Woods at 205. J.J. Henry, three weeks away from playing in his first Ryder Cup, shot 68 and was at 207, along with Shaun Micheel (68). "Hopefully, I can play a little better than last time," Woods said of his duel with Singh. "I just know that tomorrow, given that conditions are as soft as they are, I'm going to have to make some birdies."

LPGA Tour

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. -- Annika Sorenstam waved to the raucous gallery, picked up the ball and tossed it toward a sky box after ending a nearly flawless day with a 20-foot birdie putt. It was the perfect finish to a round that carried her to an LPGA record and a victory at the State Farm Classic. Down five strokes at the start of play Sunday, Sorenstam tied the LPGA mark for the lowest final-round score by a tournament winner with a 62. She shot 10 under for the day to finish 19 under, two strokes ahead of Cristie Kerr (67). "To come from five behind and to win by two, it's pretty amazing," Sorenstam said. "It's something I'm going to remember for quite some time." Third-round leader Maria Hjorth (70) fell out of contention with a double bogey on the 16th hole and finished tied for third at 16 under with Seon-Hwa Lee (69) and Il Mi Chung (69). Sorenstam birdied four of her first five holes and ended it in similar fashion for her fourth victory this year and third on the LPGA Tour. "I just haven't felt like I've been able to finish," said Sorenstam, whose career-low round is a 59. "This year, it's been 14 or 15 really good holes. ... I felt like I was in control most of the day."

Champions Tour

PEBBLE BEACH, Calif. -- Former U.S. Open champion Scott Simpson made an 8-foot birdie putt on the 18th hole for a 4-under 68 and a one-stroke victory over Jay Haas and Danny Edwards at the First Tee Open. Simpson, who began the final round trailing Tom Kite by two strokes, captured his first Champions Tour title with a 12-under 204 total. Simpson, who claimed the 1987 U.S. Open with a one-stroke margin over Tom Watson at the Olympic Club in San Francisco, had to wait for a few groups, including Haas and Edwards, who both missed mid-length putts to tie for the lead. Edwards, who had a final-round 68, and Haas, who shot a 70, finished at 205.

Associated Press

Copyright 2006 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.




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