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February 19 2011

7:20 PM

First hole being friendly

PACIFIC PALISADES – Everyone has teed off in the third round of the Northern Trust Open, and the par-5 first hole has proven generous. Every player in the last three groups – nine in all – made birdie there Saturday morning.

Fred Couples, who rolled in a 94-foot eagle putt on No. 1 in the second round, had a putt of 18 feet to get to 2 under right off the bat. He didn’t make it, but tapped in from 6 inches to maintain his two-stroke lead.

Spencer Levin, Aaron Baddeley, J.B. Holmes and John Senden kept pace and are 7 under. Kevin Na, Stewart Cink and Trevor Immelman are three strokes behind.

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