Good Bad and the Ugly 2-24-2013


Shane Lowry of Ireland chipped in twice and drilled a fairway wood to 3 feet to seize control, and then knocked out McIlroy with a bunker shot to 4 feet to save par on the final hole. Just as the shock was wearing off, Charles Howell III came up with the kind of shots he's used to seeing Woods make in the clutch – a wedge that stopped inches from the cup on the 15th hole, and a 25-foot birdie on the 16th that carried him to a 2-and-1 victory.

''It's definitely a day I'm going to remember,'' said Lowry, the third player in the last four years to eliminate the No. 1 seed in the opening round.

Russell Henley, two months into his rookie season, defeated the hottest player in the field when he took down Charl Schwartzel, who had won twice and finished no worse than fifth in his last six tournaments worldwide.

in the last 40 years, it has snowed six times – four of which, incredibly, have come in the Tucson area. That includes the 2011 Match Play final here, when Luke Donald and Martin Kaymer awoke that Sunday morning to a dusting of snow and were delayed, albeit briefly, by a sleet-coated fairway.

After firing a bogey-free, 7-under 65 in the first round of the Victorian Open Championship in Australia, you couldn't fault Nick Gillespie for getting excited. The round, which equaled the course record at Thirteenth Beach Golf Links, appeared to give the 24-year-old a two-shot lead heading into Friday's second round.

'I have been practicing my signature this afternoon in preparation for next week,' he added, alluding to the next opportunity for him to play competitively at the NZ PGA Championship in his native New Zealand.

• Ernie Els lost in the opening round for the sixth time. He missed a 3-foot par putt on the 16th hole that would have given him the lead, and he missed a 5-foot par putt on the 18th hole to lose to Fredrik Jacobson.

Almost as surprising as the freakish snowstorm on Dove Mountain was the sight of golf's two biggest stars heading to the airport, only the second time in the 15-year history of this wild tournament that No. 1 and No. 2 didn't last more than a day. The only other time the top two seeds lost in the opening round was in 2002, when Woods and Mickelson lost at La Costa.