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Monday, Dec 22, 2014
Golf

Valspar Notes: Another bumpy round for Daly

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PALM HARBOR — If it were any other golfer, it would have been just another professional struggling mightily. But it wasn’t just any other golfer. It was the always colorful John Daly, whose pants might be brighter than some shades of Valspar paint.

Daly has the notoriety at this year’s Valspar Championship of finishing in last place after shooting 90 in the second round to finish 22 over par. That horrendous round included an octuple-bogey 12 on the par-4 16th in The Snake Pit.

Daly hit his tee shot at 16 into the water then twice tried to go for the green, hitting both into the water before playing it safe out to the left. Daly shanked a 7-iron, duffed a chip and took 11 shots to get on the green for a 2-foot putt.

“It was a good 12. I got up and down for 12,” Daly told The Associated Press.

Daly’s 90 on Friday, which included five bogeys and three double bogeys, is a tournament-worst for a round and it marks at least the 16th time Daly has made a double-digit score on a PGA Tour hole. His 22 over total is 10 strokes worse than the second-highest score: 12 over by Jim Renner.

Last year at this tournament, also in the second round, Daly made a 10 on the par-4 third that put him 8 over at the time, and he finished with a 10-over 81.

All rosey

Defending 2013 U.S. Open champion Justin Rose hasn’t been seen recently. But the 33-year-old Englishman returned to Copperhead this season, just weeks after withdrawing from the Honda Classic in Palm Beach after aggravating the tendinitis in his right shoulder to delay the start of his season.

“I feel competitive, and this is a course that tells you a lot of where you’re at (as a golfer),” Rose said. “To be 3 under par (and) to shoot even means that my game is looking pretty good.”

Rose was even after Round 1 on Thursday, and he charged out Friday, getting to 4 under through 14 holes.

However, Rose bogeyed the sixth and eighth holes to drop to 2 under. Rose salvaged his 68 with a chip-in birdie from 38 feet on the ninth.

“It was your standard bogey on 6, and then I missed a 31⁄2-foot putt on 8, which I then compounded into a poor tee shot on 9,” Rose said. “All of that was frustrating.”

Furyk just fine

2010 Valspar champion Jim Furyk probably felt like he was on the tournament ropes early Friday, especially after bogeying his second hole (the 11th), but the 2003 U.S. Open champion would birdie No. 12 then string together six consecutive pars before getting an eagle on the par-5 first hole when he chipped in from 84 feet.

“I’ve missed my share of fairways, so that was a good to start to the back nine,” said Furyk, who shot a two-day 140 for a 2 under par. “I’ve pitched the ball real well this week.”

Streaking

PGA Tour journeyman and former Florida Gator Brian Gay has appeared in his 14th straight Valspar Championship and is the only player in the field to play in every event held at Innisbrook. Gay, who missed the cut for just the fifth time last season, sits at 2 over par.

Shot of the day

Harris English embodies the PGA slogan “These guys are good.”

The former Georgia Bulldog showed that by getting a tap-in eagle on the 11th hole after hitting his second shot, from 256 yards, to 3 feet from the pin on the on the par-5 hole. English, who won the OHL Classic at Mayakoba in November, sits at 1 under.

Shot of the day II

Usually, when Erik Compton is mentioned, it’s because he’s known as the PGA professional who has endured two open-heart surgeries to keep him alive due to a genetic heart condition. However, Compton almost knocked in the fourth hole-in-one ever at the 17th after hitting his tee shot 212 feet and coming up a foot short of the hole. Compton finished the second round at 3 over.

Notable

Defending Valspar Champion Kevin Streelman is even (142) after two rounds. … Big names missing the cut at Valspar included two-time British Open champion Ernie Els (4 over), former U.S. Open champs Lucas Glover and Webb Simpson (5 over), former British champs Louis Oosthuizen and Stewart Cink (5 over) and 2004 Valspar champ Vijay Singh (6 over).

Programming note

NBC and The Golf Channel will have uninterrupted coverage of the Valspar this weekend. Today, Golf Channel will air coverage from 1 to 2 p.m., then NBC will have four hours from 2 to 6. Sunday, it will air on TGC from 1 to 3 p.m. and move to NBC from 3 to 6.

Mike Camunas

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