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February 26 2012

5:55 PM

Semifinal notes from inside the ropes

By Fred Albers, PGATOUR.COM Correspondent MARANA, Ariz. -- Hunter Mahan must be a morning person. He and Mark Wilson teed off at 7:05 a.m. and Mahan immediately took the lead winning the first two holes with a par and a birdie. It was a lead he would never relinquish. Slow Start: Mark Wilson could never even his match with Mahan after hitting two uncharacteristic shots on the first two holes. Wilson missed a three-foot par putt at the first and then could not get a wedge to spin at the par-5 second hole. He lost both holes to Mahan and never drew even. Fore Right: Hunter Mahan played great golf in his semifinal but had one bad shot. It came at the 5th hole when he shanked his second shot onto the 6th tee. Mahan hit a great wedge and made par but it wasn't enough as Wilson rolled home a birdie to win the hole. Turning Point: Mark Wilson had a chance to square his match with Mahan. He had makeable birdie putts at both the 13th and 14th holes but could not roll it into the cup. Mahan then birdied the 15th and closed out the match 2 and 1 on the 17th. Muscle Man: Lee Westwood showed off his new physique with a couple huge drives on the 10th and 11th holes. A drive of 391 yards on the 10th and 350 yards at the 11th. Two shots covering 741 yards for the Englishman. Putt It Out: Few putts were conceded by Lee Westwood and Rory McIlroy in their semifinal matchup. At the 5th green, McIlroy had two-foot putt to win the hole but it was not conceded. McIlroy took not time in slamming it into the back of the cup. From that point forward, everything was putted out. Fortunate Bounce: Lee Westwood looked to be in good shape on the 11th hole when Rory McIlroy sent his second shot toward the desert. The ball hit the cart path to the right of the green and instead of bouncing into the desert, it bounded toward the green leading to birdie. The 11th was halved but McIlroy clearly had the momentum from that point forward. Fred Albers is a course reporter for SiriusXM PGA TOUR Radio and is inside the ropes this week at the World Golf Championships-Accenture Match Play Championship. For more information on SiriusXM PGA TOUR Radio, click here.
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