O’Hair off to solid start while Tiger plays to par
PARAMUS, N.J. Tiger Woods failed to carry any momentum he had from his last tournament into the start of the FedEx Cup playoffs. Neither did Sean O’Hair. That was good news for only one of them on Thursday in the Northern Trust.
O’Hair missed the cut last week and saw his FedEx Cup standing slip to No. 121, meaning he has to play well this week or his season is over. His goal is to advance to the third stage of events because the BMW Championship is at Aronimink Golf Club outside Philadelphia, where O’Hair is a member.
He drilled a three-wood from 284 yards to six feet for eagle on No. 3. He hammered another three-wood on the par-five 17th to 10 feet, settling for a two-putt birdie. That carried O’Hair to a 5-under 66, giving him a share of the lead with Kevin Tway, Jamie Lovemark and Vaughn Taylor.
“I’m obviously very disappointed that I’m not in a better position (in the FedEx Cup standings), but I’m kind of in charge of my destiny,” O’Hair said. “If I play good golf I’m just going to work into the next week.”
Woods, playing for the first time since his runner-up finish at the PGA Championship, had a pair of birdies, a pair of bogeys, a lot of pars and a 71. He was in a tie for 60th. Woods just never got it close enough for good looks at birdie.
“Just didn’t have the situations where I had the full club and I could go ahead and take a rip at it and start being aggressive and going after these flags,” Woods said. “I kept having to play a little defensive because I was taking more club, trying to shape it and take spin off. One of those days.”
Two Canadians are in the field. Adam Hadwin was even after a round of 71, while fellow Abbotsford, B.C., native Nick Taylor was 1 over after a round of 72.