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Gary Woodland starts strong in Masters

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Gary Woodland, Kansas University’s only two-time PGA tour winner, came out of the blocks in impressive fashion Thursday at Augusta National, where he’s playing in his third Masters. Woodland carded 14 pars, three birdies and one bogey for a two-under 70.

At 5 p.m., with 24 of the 97 golfers in the field still on the course, Woodland was tied for fifth with seven other golfers, two strokes behind Bill Haas, the leader in the clubhouse, and one stroke behind defending Masters champion Adam Scott, 2012 Masters champ Bubba Watson and 2010 British Open champ Louis Oosthuizen.

Woodland played with Ian Poulter, who shot a 76, and 2009 Masters champion Angel Cabrera, who carded a 78.

Woodland birdied No. 2, a par 5, made bogey on No. 4, a par 3, for a 36 on the front and birdied both par 5 holes on the back side, Nos. 13 and 15.

Talk about avoiding big numbers. Woodland had one 5 and every other hole was a 3 or a 4. He has so much talent all he needs to do to stay near the top of the leader board for four days in any tournament is to remain solid, steady, consistent and he was all that for openers Thursday.

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