Tiger falls just short of first win since 2013 at Valspar

Tiger Woods came oh-so-close to his first tour victory since 2013 at the Valspar Championship on Sunday. But it just wasn't meant to be.

With a chance to tie Englishman Paul Casey for the lead on the 18th hole, Woods' 39-foot birdie putt fell about two feet short to give Casey -- who shot 6-under after teeing off in the ninth-to-last grouping -- his first PGA win since 2009.

Woods, who was looking for his first win since the 2013 WGC Bridgestone Invitational, shot a 1-under 70 on Sunday to finish the event tied with Patrick Reed for second place at 9-under 275. Woods had two birdies and one bogey on the day. One of the birdies was a 44-foot putt he rolled in at the 17th to move within a shot of the lead with a hole to play, drawing a thunderous roar from the crowd.

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Tiger Woods at the Valspar Championship
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Tiger Woods at the Valspar Championship
PALM HARBOR, FL - MARCH 09: Tiger Woods reacts after missing a putt on the sixth hole during the second round of the Valspar Championship at Innisbrook Resort Copperhead Course on March 9, 2018 in Palm Harbor, Florida. (Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images)
PALM HARBOR, FL - MARCH 09: Tiger Woods plays his shot from the ninth tee during the second round of the Valspar Championship at Innisbrook Resort Copperhead Course on March 9, 2018 in Palm Harbor, Florida. (Photo by Sam Greenwood/Getty Images)
PALM HARBOR, FL - MARCH 09: Tiger Woods looks over a putt on the ninth hole during the second round of the Valspar Championship at Innisbrook Resort Copperhead Course on March 9, 2018 in Palm Harbor, Florida. (Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images)
PALM HARBOR, FL - MARCH 09: Tiger Woods plays his shot from the eighth tee during the second round of the Valspar Championship at Innisbrook Resort Copperhead Course on March 9, 2018 in Palm Harbor, Florida. (Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images)
PALM HARBOR, FL - MARCH 09: Tiger Woods reacts after playing his second shot on the fifth hole during the second round of the Valspar Championship at Innisbrook Resort Copperhead Course on March 9, 2018 in Palm Harbor, Florida. (Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images)
PALM HARBOR, FL - MARCH 09: Tiger Woods plays his shot from the fifth tee during the second round of the Valspar Championship at Innisbrook Resort Copperhead Course on March 9, 2018 in Palm Harbor, Florida. (Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images)
PALM HARBOR, FL - MARCH 09: Tiger Woods catches a ball on the tenth green during the second round of the Valspar Championship at Innisbrook Resort Copperhead Course on March 9, 2018 in Palm Harbor, Florida. (Photo by Sam Greenwood/Getty Images)
PALM HARBOR, FL - MARCH 09: Tiger Woods looks over a putt on the 17th green during the second round of the Valspar Championship at Innisbrook Resort Copperhead Course on March 9, 2018 in Palm Harbor, Florida. (Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images)
PALM HARBOR, FL - MARCH 08: Tiger Woods tees off during the first round of the Valspar Championship on March 08, 2018, at Westin Innisbrook-Copperhead Course in Palm Harbor, FL. (Photo by Cliff Welch/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)
PALM HARBOR, FL - MARCH 08: Tiger Woods signs autographs for fans during the first round of the Valspar Championship at Innisbrook Resort (Copperhead) on March 8, 2018 in Palm Harbor, Florida. (Photo by Ryan Young/PGA TOUR)
PALM HARBOR, FL - MARCH 08: Tiger Woods signs autographs for fans after playing the first round of the Valspar Championship at Innisbrook Resort Copperhead Course on March 8, 2018 in Palm Harbor, Florida. (Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images)
PALM HARBOR, FL - MARCH 08: Tiger Woods catches a ball on the 17th hole during the first round of the Valspar Championship at Innisbrook Resort Copperhead course on March 8, 2018 in Palm Harbor, Florida. (Photo by Sam Greenwood/Getty Images)
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"I had a good shot at winning the tournament," Woods said in a post-round interview on CBS. "A couple putts here and there, and it could've been a different story."

Woods can still hold his head up high after a strong weekend in Palm Harbor, Fla. He earned his first top-two finish in an official event since The Barclays in 2013 and also posted four straight sub-par scores in a tournament for the first time since the aforementioned Barclays.

With his performance, Woods is projected to move up to No. 43 in the FedExCup standings.

Woods entered Sunday one stroke behind Canadian Corey Conners for the lead after shooting a third-round 67.

Next up for Woods will be the Arnold Palmer Invitational at Bay Hill next week. He is an eight-time winner at Bay Hill.

--Field Level Media

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