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AUGUSTA TEACHES TIGER A LESSON

Augusta National tamed the Tiger on Saturday.

"I was about ready to break something," said frustrated U.S. amateur champion Tiger Woods after he soared to a 5-over-par 77 in the third round of the Masters after two consecutive par outings.The 19-year-old Stanford freshman, followed by huge galleries awed by his prodigious 300-yard drives, had trouble keeping his wedge shots from flying over the greens.

"It was frustrating," he said. "I kept hitting shots right at the flag and they kept going too long. I couldn't believe it."

Caddy Tommy Bennett said "there ain't enough golf course out here for him. He hit everything long."

Father Earl Woods kidded his son: "Well, I guess you're a slow learner."

The elder Woods added: "It was a good learning experience and that's what you're here for."

The younger Woods shot back: "I'm here to win, that's what I'm here for."

Woods once again thrilled the crowd with his booming drives. He opened on the first tee with a 310-yarder down the middle.

On the 555-yard, Par-5 No. 2, Woods hit a 6-iron on his second shot to the green for a two-putt birdie. On the 485-yard, Par-5 No. 13, he hit an 8-iron for his second as he did at the 500-yard, Par-5 No. 15.

"My drives were great and my putting was great," Woods said. "My iron distance was the thing missing."

Crowds were deserting big hitter John Daly in droves.

Taking note of a third day of troubles for Woods, Daly said "this place tames you."

The 6-foot, 155-pound Woods couldn't control his adrenalin.

"I wish I was tired," he said. "Maybe it would slow me down. Maybe I need a Valium or something."

The elder Woods tried to console his son.

"Don't worry, this has happenbd to a lot of people," Earl Woods said. "You just have to learn. "

There was a scare on Wednesday that young Woods might not be able to play because of back spasms, but he responded to treatment.

The younger Woods, who has already won a crystal bowl for making the cut as low amateur, said his goal on Sunday would be to shoot a 5-under-par 67 and get back to even.

"I don't want to leave here with green (over par) numbers on the board," he said.