Casey wins Valspar as Woods finishes one stroke behind

What Tiger Woods said Saturday at the Valspar Championship			Jasen Vinlove  USA TODAY Sports

Casey played the last 15 holes in 6 under to grab his first victory since the 2009 Shell Houston Open. From there he elected to putt through the edge of the fringe and his birdie effort came up woefully short and ended up tumbling back down the slope to his feet.

The 40-year-old began the final round five shots off the lead but carded four birdies and a bogey in a front nine of 33, before rolling in a hat-trick of birdies from the 11th.

Woods and his massive following went dormant after an opening birdie to briefly share the lead.

On the par-3 17th, Woods drained a 44 foot putt for birdie to get within one stroke of clubhouse leader Paul Casey.

It seems like every chip he hits these days has a chance to go in, and he finally got a short, delicate one to drop from behind the green at nine.

"To get this one, to get my second one on the PGA tour is emotional". That was his best finish since he tied for second at that Barclays tournament, right about the time his back started to give out.

Casey past year rejoined the European Tour so he would be eligible.

The Englishman then had to wait for over an hour to see if the players behind could match or better the mark he had set.

Brandt Snedeker, who was paired with Woods for the final two rounds at Valspar: "I can confirm he's back, the roars are back". He shot 77 and tied for 16th.

Building momentum from 12th place at the Honda Classic two weeks ago in his third official tournament since undergoing spinal fusion surgery last April, Woods was treated this week like a returning hero.

Tiger, can you put into words maybe some of the emotion and adrenaline today for being back with a chance to win on a Sunday and just what was that like for you even though you weren't as sharp?

Saw the magic there late on the round at the 71st hole, the long birdie putt. He is getting better with each tournament, though he didn't feel sharp with his irons on Sunday and played too often to the fat of the greens.

Woods blamed his iron play, but not his nerves, for falling short.

"It was one of those days where I just kept getting the half-club, just one of those days where I couldn't quite get the full-club", Tiger said after the 18th.

Woods lifted his head after draining that 43-foot birdie putt on 17, willing it in, and grinned, tugged appreciatively at the bill of his cap.

Woods didn't end his near five-year victory drought but he was still pleased with his week and looking forward to chasing a ninth win in the Arnold Palmer Invitational at Bay Hill in his final warm-up for the Masters. He is an eight-time victor at Bay Hill, and the euphoria over his return is sure to reach even higher decibels. "A couple putts here and there, it could have been a different story".

It was a swooning ball, an operatic ham of a putt playing to the back row of the theatre, curling fractionally and dipping nearly regretfully into the cup.

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