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Woods' round 'gross,' while troubles among leaders predicts wild finish

Tod Leonard, The San Diego Union-Tribune on

Published in Golf

SAN DIEGO -- Sunday nerves came early to the Farmers Insurance Open.

And if what happened on the 18th hole late on Saturday afternoon serves as a preview, it's going to be a wild finish at Torrey Pines.

Sweden's Alex Noren played the par-5 in the way you're supposed to and was rewarded.

He bombed a drive down the middle, launched a second shot to the back of the green, and two-putted for birdie to cap a round of 3-under-par-69 that gave him sole possession of the lead at 11 under.

Noren was alone at the top after 54 holes, partly because of what happened in the group immediately behind him.

World No. 2 Jon Rahm, who made eagle at 18 on Sunday a year ago and won the Farmers, dropped his approach in the pond in front of the green for the second time this week and ended up making double bogey on the second-easiest hole.

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Rahm fell all the way into a tie for 12th at 7 under.

Ryan Palmer, who is seeking his first tour win since 2010, seized a two-shot lead on the back nine by draining a 44-foot eagle putt.

But he had to scramble to make par on 18 when he drove into a bunker, laid up and missed the green. A par gave him a 1-over 73 and put him one stroke behind Noren.

And Luke List had the most adventurous route to the final cup. He sliced his drive to the right, clipped a tree limb with his second, and eventually made bogey.

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