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Scott, Dufner to play in Sony

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    Jordan Spieth birdied Nos. 17 and 18 and is in a four-way tie for first place.

KAPALUA, Maui »PGA Tour major winners Adam Scott and Jason Dufner have committed to next week’s Sony Open in Hawaii at Waialae Country Club.

In all, 18 of the 30 golfers competing at this week’s Hyundai Tournament of Champions will travel to Oahu to play in the first full-field event of 2014 in the PGA Tour’s new wraparound schedule. Scott, who is ranked second in the world to Tiger Woods, won the 2013 Masters, and Dufner took home the trophy at the 2013 PGA Championship.

Other notables playing in this week’s winners-only field who will play in the Sony Open are Matt Kuchar, 2013 rookie of the year Jordan Spieth and past Sony Open winner Zach Johnson.

There are a dozen golfers who chose not to come next week. Among them are 2013 Tournament of Champions winner Dustin Johnson, 2011 FedEx Cup champ Bill Haas, 2012 FedEx Cup winner Brandt Snedeker and 2012 U.S. Open champ Webb Simpson.

Zach Johnson is one of nine past Sony Open champions in next week’s field, including 2005 winner Vijay Singh. Singh, who took part in the Pacific Links Hawaii Championship in September, is not in the Champions Tour season-opening Mitsubishi Electric Championship at Hualalai in two weeks. Singh said in September he might play on both tours in 2014.

Sony Open defending champion Russell Henley is back as well. He will have a difficult time improving upon his record-setting performance at Waialae. He shot a 24-under 256 to win in his inaugural event as a PGA Tour member.

Other notables in next week’s field are Retief Goosen, Justin Leonard, John Daly, Bo Van Pelt and Y.E. Yang. Current Champions Tour members Kenny Perry and Fred Funk are also in the field. They will play on the Big Island in two weeks.

No "Roll Tide" for Thompson

Not even his wife spoke to first-round leader Michael Thompson during Thursday night’s Sugar Bowl between Alabama and Oklahoma. About the only thing that got the Crimson Tide graduate out of his funk after the Sooners’ 49-35 win was Friday’s opening-round 66 that left him in a tie with Spieth, Simpson and Chris Kirk.

"Yes, very much so," Thompson said, when asked if his 66 took a little of the sting out of the Tide’s performance on Thursday. "I was not a happy person last night. You can ask my wife. I didn’t say much after the game. But I came out here with a clear head, which is good, and just tried to enjoy myself."

Field set for Sony pre-qualifier

A field of 75 pros and amateurs tee off Sunday in the Sony Open in Hawaii pre-qualifier. Golfers go out from 7:30 a.m. at Turtle Bay’s Palmer Course.

The top 40 advance to the Monday qualifier at Palmer, with four slots available for the Sony.

Among the pros playing Sunday are Hawaii’s Alex Ching,Tadd Fujikawa, Eric Dugas, TJ Kua, Nick Mason, Sam Cyr, Spencer Shishido and Sean Maekawa. Amateurs include John Oda, Lorens Chan, Richard Hattori and Kalena Preus.

Inside the numbers

Despite the tricky weather conditions of wind change and light rain, 28 of the 30 golfers landed in the red at the famed Plantation Course, with 10 rounds in the 60s on the par-73 layout. There were six eagles in the round, all on the frontside. The field was 89 under over the opening 18 holes.

The most difficult hole was the par-4 first, with a scoring average of 4.30. None of the 30 golfers managed a birdie on the 520-yard hole that was playing into the wind early on. There were 22 pars, seven bogeys and one double-bogey on the picturesque hole.

The par-5 fifth was the easiest hole with a scoring average of 4.10. There were three eagles, 21 birdies and six pars. Spieth wound up parring it after hitting his second shot into the green a little fat. He said it was his only bad swing of the round.

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