Love tries not to look at Masters

ORLANDO — Davis Love is trying not to look ahead and to concern himself only with the tournaments on his schedule. He gave himself reason to hope Thursday that the Masters might still be on his list.

Love chipped in twice during a five-hole stretch that he played in 6 under early in his round, then finished strong with a 45-foot birdie and an 8-foot par putt that felt just as good for 6-under 66 and a share of the lead in the Arnold Palmer Invitational.

J.B. Holmes, among the early starters, played bogey-free in calm conditions and also had 66.

Love has two weeks left to earn a trip to Augusta National, which he has not played the past two years. His only chance is to win at Bay Hill or next week in the Houston Open.

"It's always in the back of your mind — or the front of your mind," Love said. "After a few weeks where I played kind of poorly … I was just mentally kind of frazzled. I just said, 'You're going to have to just to play the ones you get in and do the best job you can and quit worrying about everything else.' "

Mike Weir had a rare moment when he reached a par 5 from a fairway bunker at No. 12 to set up one of his eight birdies on his way to 5-under 67, tied with Henrik Stenson.

Ernie Els, playing for the first time since his victory two weeks ago at Doral, was in a group of four at 68. Phil Mickelson and Jim Furyk, winner of last weekend's Transitions Championship at Innisbrook in Palm Harbor, were among those at 71.

LPGA: Na On Min shot a bogey-free 6-under 66 to take a one-shot lead after the first round of the inaugural Kia Classic in Carlsbad, Calif. , the first U.S. stop on the tour this season. She led three other South Koreans atop the leaderboard. Na Yeon Choi was one stroke back, and Seon Hwa Lee and Inbee Park were two back, tied with Catriona Matthew.

Japanese star Ai Miyazato, the first tour player in 44 years to win the first two events of a season, had 2-over 74. No player has won the first three tournaments. No. 1-ranked Lorena Ochoa was in a five-way tie for eighth at 70. Tampa resident Kristy McPherson shot 3-over 75 and Seminole's Brittany Lincicome 6-over 78.

New Tiger ad: Tiger Woods shot a TV commercial for Nike on Thursday, celebrity news Web site TMZ.com reported. The commercial was shot in the morning on the Isleworth Country Club course in his neighborhood in Windermere, the site said. No details were available.

Love tries not to look at Masters 03/25/10 [Last modified: Thursday, March 25, 2010 11:20pm]

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