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Bay Hill: Kevin Kisner, Charley Hoffman tied for lead

Bay Hill: Kevin Kisner, Charley Hoffman tied for lead”

Palmer died on September 25 of heart complications. His tournament was one of the many incredible legacies he left behind, and many anxious that after Palmer was gone this event would lose some luster.

At seven-over 151, he was way down in the 120-player field at Bay Hill in a tournament where tributes poured in for "The King", who passed away past year.

First-round leader Fred Couples had a 70 to fall into a tie for third with Kevin Sutherland (65) at 11 under. He ran the place.

Palmer used to greet the victor on the 18th green. Both Kisner and Hoffman know how much a win at this event would mean this year. Instead, 60 players showed up.

Hoffman likely would have made the field for the Dell Match Play until he missed the cut at the Valspar Championship last week, the deadline for qualifying. There were so many players that they went down the line twice.

Defending champion Jason Day fell out of contention on Saturday, with a costly 75 dropping him to even-par and tied for 39th. "I'm just trying to work on a few things and trying to improve over the weekend". He was the last person to share a celebratory drink with the King, which nearly was a mistake.

"Hopefully I'll be ready by Augusta", he said. "And I was on Golf Channel and I felt absolutely hammered".

"To be in a position at Arnie's event is a special spot", Hoffman said.

This really is a week of honoring the past. It will be held in Phoenix.

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"Let's make him proud and hit this one hard", Saunders said. Day closed it out with a bunker shot to 4 feet to save par and get that handshake with the King. John Daly received a sponsor's exemption and was grouped with Ian Poulter and Seung-Yul Noh.

Hoping to find the fairway on the demanding par-4 18th hole, Leishman backed off his tee shot He then knocked it into the deep rough right of the fairway to force a layup left of the green.

Davis Love III never won at Bay Hill, but he did leave a lasting memory. Call it a half-John Daly, who once made 18 on the hole.

During his pro-am Wednesday, a woman asking for an autograph wore a shirt showing a photo that Day recognized immediately: Palmer in a golf cart clasping hands with Day, with his wife and two young children. It was the first of three victories in six starts.

But between Friday night and Saturday morning, Grillo's form evaporated.

Remember these guys? The last time they played, Fred Couples won the Chubb Classic on February 19.

But the 24-year-old saw his chances vanish along with two golf balls and an iron on the Part 5 fifth, as he hit the drink twice on his approach to the green before throwing the offending club into the water to join those lost balls.



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