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March 10 — With the golf world focused on the Tiger Woods-Phil Mickelson duel at Doral, Boston golfer James Driscoll tried to steal the show Thursday by flirting with a 59 Thursday at the Puerto Rico Open.

Starting on the 10th hole at Trump International Golf Club in Rio Grande, Driscoll opened with six birdies on his first nine — including an incredible stretch of seven in a row as he made the turn. The birdie fest came to a halt when the 33-year-old journeyman carded a par on the fourth hole. He slugged right back with an eagle-3 on the par-5 fifth hole, but the 59 watch officially ended after consecutive bogeys on the par-4 seventh and par-3 eighth.

With golfers still on the course, Driscoll finished his opening round at 9-under 63 and took a 2-stroke lead over Will MacKenzie into Friday’s second-round play.

In three PGA Tour starts this year, Driscoll’s best finish was a share of 13th at the Pebble Beach National Pro-Am. His career low was a 62, which he posted in the fourth round of the 2009 Valero Texas Open, on his way to a second-place finish. His only other runner-up close came at the Zurich Classic of New Orleans in 2005, when Driscoll lost to fellow New Englander Tim Petrovic in a sudden-death playoff.

(Emily Kay is a regular contributor to New England Golf Monthly. Check her out on the Waggle Room, Boston Golf Examiner, and National Golf Examiner, and GottaGoGolf websites. You may also follow Kay on Twitter.)

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