By Fred Albers, PGA TOUR.COM Correspondent
NORTON, Mass. — Tiger Woods almost stole a golf tournament on Monday. He turned at 4 under and was just three off the lead, but he didn’t make another birdie until the 18th hole. Woods drove it beautifully, hitting 11 fairways in the final round but he did not hit enough irons close enough over the final nine holes to have realistic birdie chances. There still seems to be a lack of commitment when the shot requires a draw, and there is still the occasional stroke where the putter does not release. But Woods played very good golf this week. His body language was excellent and I would be surprised if he does not win a Playoffs event.
Rare miss: This is totally unfair, because Rory McIlroy hit so many excellent shots in the final round, but he also hit one that was surprisingly bad. On the 15th hole, the Ulsterman totally chunked the ball off the tee, hitting a good two inches behind the ball. The drive traveled 170 yards and left 236 to the hole. But he still made par. Next time you chunk one in front of your friends, remind everyone you hit it as well as McIlroy.
Karma: Louis Oosthuizen said something on Sunday that put me on alert. He said he felt bad making seven birdies in a row while McIlroy was not making anything. Oosthuizen is such a nice man, it’s hard to criticize that statement, but in sports it’s very dangerous to “feel bad” for anyone. As soon as you do, it seems fate intervenes and the player who trailed becomes the leader.
Drama: There were dozens of little dramas that played out on Monday afternoon as players struggled to finish in the top 70 of the FedExCup standings and qualify for the BMW Championship. Josh Teater was 3 under through eight holes only to play the remainder of the course in 7 over and finish outside the top 70. Indiana native Jeff Overton, meanwhile, earned a slot so he can play a PGA TOUR event in front of his Hoosier fans for the first time. Dickie Pride’s wife is from Indiana. He just barely qualified and is already looking for tickets for all of his relatives. But nobody provided more drama than Charley Hoffman. The former Deutsche Bank Champion was a lock to qualify for the BMW until the back nine. He bogeyed the 10th, then tripled the 11th. Hoffman also bogeyed the 13th and 17th. He needed a par on the 18th to qualify and made a putt from 11 feet, 5 inches to sneak into the top 70.
Handout: Blake Adams did not have a good day. He shot even par to finish 3 over for the tournament, and did not qualify for the BMW. Adams was obviously discouraged as he walked off the 18th green when a small boy asked for his glove. Adams stopped, signed the glove and handed it to the young boy, who had a both a souvenir and a story to tell his friends. Everyone in school this week will hear about what a great guy Adams is.
Fred Albers is a course reporter for SiriusXM PGA TOUR Radio. For more information on SiriusXM PGA TOUR Radio, click here.
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