• Arnold Palmer Invitational

Scott equals course record at Bay Hill

ESPN staff
March 20, 2014
Adam Scott stormed to the top of the leaderboard © Getty Images

Masters champion Adam Scott tied the course record at Bay Hill with a 10-under 62 in the first round of the Arnold Palmer Invitational.

Scott made two eagle putts and had three birdie putts longer than 20 feet, one of them from well off the green on the 15th hole. It gave the 33-year-old Australian a four-shot lead among the early starters on an ideal weather day. At the end of the round, Scott held a three-shot advantage over Ryo Ishikawa and John Merrick.

It was the lowest round in 30 years at Bay Hill, and it was good enough to make a big crowd forget for a moment that defending champion and world No.1 Tiger Woods isn't here this week. Woods withdrew because of a back injury.

Andy Bean in 1981 and Greg Norman in 1984 are the only others to shoot 62 at Bay Hill.

On the opposite end of the spectrum was Bubba Watson, who withdrew after shooting an 83 - which included a sextuple-bogey 11 on the par-5 6th hole.

Watson, who had a win and two runner-up finishes in the last four events in which he's played, hit three tee shots into the water on the hole. He also finished the round - 21 strokes behind Scott - with a triple-bogey 8 on the 18th hole.

Watson said on Twitter that he withdrew from the event because of allergies.

Paul Casey was the highest-placed Englishmen on the leaderboard, posting a five-under 67 to trail by five shots. Ian Poulter and Graeme McDowell both finished on four-under. Justin Rose was on one-under, with Lee Westwood having a difficult start to the event with a three-over 75.

This article first appeared on ESPN.com

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