Tiger Woods reached all the par 5s in two, had control of his irons, made one good escape from the trees and holed enough putts Friday for a 6-under 65 that gave him an one-shot lead after the first round in the Deutsche Bank Championship.
Billy Andrade, inspired by watching fellow New Englander Brad Faxon win last week in Connecticut, holed an 8-iron from 156 yards for eagle on the 13th hole on his way to a 66, his best round since May. He was tied with Carlos Franco, Briny Baird and Steve Lowery.
No one else challenged them among the afternoon starters, although conditions were so tame that 60 players broke par and were within five shots of the lead. Woods also opened with a 65 a year ago on the TPC at Boston, but ended up losing ground, losing the tournament and losing his No. 1 ranking to Vijay Singh.
Singh could not return to defend his title because he injured his back playing table tennis, making this the first time Woods has played on the PGA Tour without Singh around since the Nissan Open in February. This late into the year, several players are trying to win for the first time or at least keep their card. Baird is 138th on the money list and already applied for the qualifying school. He hasn't had a top 10 since the Bay Hill Invitational in March.
After starting on the back nine, Baird made the turn at 3 under and started his final nine with three more, but gave one back on the par-4 fifth. Woods opened with five pars, made a 10-foot on the 15th and grazed the cup with a 45-foot eagle attempt on the 18th hole. His only lapse on the greens came at the par-5 second, where he three-putted for par, missing a 4-foot birdie, AP reports.