Six Straight:Aired February 8, 2000 - 1:20 p.m. ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
LOU WATERS, CNN ANCHOR: With a come-from-behind triumph that thrilled the crowd at Pebble Beach, Tiger Woods has become the first golfer since Ben Hogan 1948 to win six straight PGA tour victories championships.
Vince Cellini of CNN/"Sports Illustrated" has the story of the streak.
VINCE CELLINI, CNNSI CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): It began, appropriately, less than a two-hour drive from the birthplace of Jack Nicholas. Tiger Woods notched his fifth win of the 1999 season in late August at the NEC Invitational in Akron, Ohio, with an eight under 62 in the third round. Phil Mickelson nearly overcame Tiger's five-stroke lead heading into the final round, but a birdie on 17 gave Woods the win by a stroke.
The streak nearly ended at one in mid-October, when Woods followed three straight rounds of six-under golf with a 73 on Sunday at the National Car Rental Classic in Lake Buena Visa, Florida. Woods managed to hang on for a one-stroke win over Ernie Else despite shooting over par in the final round for a second-straight tournament.
Halloween brought few treats for Woods. The tour championship in Houston was overshadowed by the tragic death of Payne Stuart, and Tiger appeared to be in serious trouble after injuring a wrist while trying to play through a rock. After a Friday off to attend Stuart's memorial service, Woods was six under for 27 holes to take a three- stroke lead. Sunday's 69 gave Tiger a four-stroke win over Davis Love and made him the youngest player to win seven events in a single season since 1929.
DAVIS LOVE III, GOLFER: He isn't even close to how good he can get. I think we're starting to see that. And, you know, as long as he doesn't hit too many rocks he's going to be good for a long, long time.
CELLINI: Love could not have been more prophetic. Woods took the show to Spain in November for his fourth-straight win at the American Express Championship. Tiger trailed local favorite Miguel Angel Jimenez by a stroke entering the final round and seemed doomed after a triple bogy on 17. A Himenez bogy on the final hole of regulation gave Woods new life, and Tiger put away the Spaniard on the first play-off hole.
Number five meant a January rematch with Ernie Els in Maui. Woods and Els stayed within a stoke of each other throughout the final round at the Mercedes championship. It took a play-off to decide it, but when Tiger drained a 40-foot birdie putt on the second extra hole, this streak had survived, putting Woods one away from tying Ben Hogan for the longest streak since 1948.
Two sudden-death playoffs, a sub-par final round, a hostile crowd and an injury: Woods had overcame everything in his run, but a major deficit in the final round, until Monday. At Pebble Beach for the National Pro-Am, Tiger trailed Rookie Matt Gogel by seven strokes with seven to play. But after an amazing eagle on 15, the hunt was on. Woods' birdied two of the final three holes, and Gogel seemed to hear footsteps.
TIGER WOODS: I've been there. I blew one, clod (ph) cities, and I know how difficult it is and to go through all the emotions and to have a lead like that, like he did. It's not easy.
When the rookies' birdie putt went long on 18, Woods had tied Hogan at six straight, moved more than halfway to Byron Nelson's seemingly-untouchable 11 and cemented a growing legend that appears to know no bounds.
WATERS: He's amazing. Tiger Woods now goes for his next victory at the Buick Invitational, and that's in San Diego this weekend.
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