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Woods coasts to dominant victory

SAN DIEGO — Tiger Woods was so good for so long at Torrey Pines that it didn't matter how bad it looked at the end.

In a finish that was fitting for a long and exasperating week, Woods built an eight-shot lead with five holes to play Monday until he lost patience with the slow play and started losing shots that only determined the margin of victory.

Despite two bogeys and double bogey in the final hour, he closed with par-72 for a four-shot victory in the Farmers Insurance Open.

"I'm excited the way I played all week," said Woods, who finished at 14-under 274. "I hit the ball well; pretty much did everything well and built myself a nice little cushion. I had some mistakes at the end, but all my good play before that allowed me to afford those mistakes."

He won for the 75th time in his PGA Tour career, seven behind the record held by Sam Snead.

Woods won this tournament for the seventh time, and he set a PGA Tour record by winning at Torrey Pines for the eighth time, including his 2008 U.S. Open. Woods also has won seven times at Bay Hill and at Firestone.

Torrey Pines is a public course that he has turned into his private domain.

"I don't know if anybody would have beaten him this week," said Nick Watney, who got within five shots of Woods when the tournament was still undecided then made three bogeys on his next five holes. "He's definitely on his game."

Defending champion Brandt Snedeker (69) and Josh Teater (69) tied for the second. Watney had 71 and tied for fourth with Jimmy Walker.

It was a strong statement for Woods, who was coming off a missed cut last week in Abu Dhabi. That's a distant memory. The question now is what kind of season is shaping up for Woods.

"I think he wanted to send a message," said Hunter Mahan, who shares a swing coach with Woods. "I think deep down he did. You play some games to try to motivate yourself. There's been so much talk about Rory (McIlroy). Rory is now with Nike. That would be my guess."

Woods coasts to dominant victory 01/28/13 [Last modified: Monday, January 28, 2013 9:44pm]
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