Tiger up to the task in a tough day at Innisbrook

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Tiger up to the task in a tough day at Innisbrook
Tiger up to the task in a tough day at Innisbrook

PALM HARBOR, Fla. (AP) – Tiger Woods found out how tough Innisbrook can be in a swirling wind, and he was up to the task.

Woods smacked his hands into a pine during a bold escape from the trees for par and was among only about 20 percent of the field that managed to break par Thursday in the Valspar Championship.

Canadian rookie Corey Conners didn’t make a bogey until his final hole at No. 9 for a 4-under 67. He had a one-shot lead over Nick Watney, Whee Kim and Kelly Kraft.

Woods made five birdies and shot 70. It was his first time to break par in the opening round of a PGA Tour event since a 64 in the 2015 Wyndham Championship – just six tournaments ago because of back surgeries.

Tiger Woods hits from behind a tree on the fourth hole during the first round of the Valspar Championship golf tournament Thursday, March 8, 2018, in Palm Harbor, Fla. (AP Photo/Mike Carlson)
Corey Conners tees off on the 11th hole during the first round of the Valspar Championship golf tournament Thursday, March 8, 2018, in Palm Harbor, Fla. (AP Photo/Mike Carlson)
Rory McIlroy tees off on the 13th hole during the first round of the Valspar Championship golf tournament Thursday, March 8, 2018, in Palm Harbor, Fla. (AP Photo/Mike Carlson)
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