"I've got to hit my irons a little better than I did today," Woods said. "I didn't hit them very close. I didn't give myself a lot of looks."
The birdies came smoothly. Woods hit the green on the par-5 sixth in two shots and missed by inches on his eagle putt. At the 10th, his wedge shot stopped 2 feet from the hole. And there was the near-ace at 16.
Finau is a 28-year-old from Utah who turned pro at 17 and then spent years grinding on smaller tours before making it to the major leagues in 2014-15. He won his first and only title in 2016 in the Puerto Rico Open.
He nearly won for a second time in October's Safeway Open in Napa, finishing second.
On Thursday, Finau birdied the first two holes on the North Course, added back-to-back birdies at Nos. 5 and 6, and made another birdie at 8. On the back nine, he birdied 10, 13, 16 and 18.
As one of the biggest hitters on tour -- Finau is a second in average distance this season at 329.8 -- he has considered the Torrey Pines courses a favorable playground. In three Farmers starts, he doesn't have a finish outside the top 25, and last year he tied for fourth.
Finau said he relishes taking on the South Course next.
"The South Course sets up nicely for me with my length," he said. "It looks good to me. A lot of holes you can hit a fade, and I'm a fader of the ball. So I think probably a combo of those things off the tee and playing this golf course, I have some momentum."
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