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  • March 18, 2020 9:45 PM EDT

    PONTE VEDRA BEACH, Fla. Carolina Hurricanes Shirts . -- One spectator wore fake deer antlers. Another yelled about eating venison. And a group of guys shouted, "Stay off the spray, Vijay." But for the most part, there was little public reaction to Vijay Singhs lawsuit filed against the PGA Tour during the opening round of The Players Championship on Thursday. Hecklers were few and far between at TPC Sawgrass -- possibly because it was a well-behaved golf crowd, possibly because it was Singhs home course and possibly because few care enough to make a public outcry. "He doesnt deserve that," playing partner Robert Garrigus said. "I dont know how many majors hes won. I dont know how many tournaments hes won. Hes won a lot of money out here. He deserves our respect as players even if hes suing the PGA Tour or not. Its a delicate situation right now. Unfortunately, it had to happen. But it is what it is. ... "I only heard a couple of idiots out there today. They were getting a little saucy. There were a couple of guys being stupid, but other than that, it was fine." Singh sued the PGA Tour on Wednesday for exposing him to "public humiliation and ridicule" during a 12-week investigation into his use of deer antler spray. The tour dropped its case last week. The lawsuit and its timing raised eyebrows. The Players Championship is the tours flagship event and is played on the course Singh has honed his game on for the past decade. But there was little reaction from the Stadium Course gallery. The most noticeable response came at the first tee, where Jacksonville resident Jim Kavanagh wore those felt antlers. "He wont talk to the press, so I thought maybe I could get a reaction out of him," Kavanagh told reporters. "He shouldnt be suing the PGA Tour. He should be suing WADA." Garrigus noticed the antlers and sarcastically called them "pretty special." Nonetheless, he couldnt avoid joking about the lawsuit. "I kind of made fun of it today on the first tee just to loosen things up a little bit, which I do very well," Garrigus said. "I was like, Well, youre in the spotlight right now, arent you big guy? Hes like, Yeah, for the wrong reasons. It was fun." They laughed, and Garrigus let it go for the rest of the round. "I didnt get into it," he said. "I dont know the details; I dont know what hes suing for and all that stuff. Hes obviously earned the respect until everything goes through. Thats what Im saying about that." On the par-3 third, a woman shouted, "We dont care what the PGA Tour says. We support Vijay" as the golfer passed. Singh even played the famed and often raucous island-green at No. 17 without much fanfare. There was a "you (stink)" comment on the 18th, followed a few minutes later by someone shouting, "We got your back, Vijay." "He was fine out there," said J.J. Henry, who also played in the group with Singh. "I dont know much about it. Im out here trying to tackle a tough golf course. Ive played a lot of golf with him and hes always been good to me. That stuff is none of my business. Im trying to figure out how to stay out of some of these hazards." Singh bogeyed two of the first three holes and fell 12 shots off the lead with a double at No. 8. He rallied on the back nine, making birdies at 16 and 17, but pulled his next tee shot into the water and finished with a bogey and a 2-over 74. He is tied for 99th, 11 shots behind Roberto Castro. Singh said in a Sports Illustrated article in January that he used deer antler spray and he was "looking forward to some change in my body." The spray was said to include an insulin-like growth factor that was on the tours list of banned substances. The tour sent a sample from Singh to be tested, and it returned small amounts of IGF-1. PGA Tour Commissioner Tim Finchem announced April 30 that the tour was dropping its case because of new information from the World Anti-Doping Agency, which said deer antler spray was no longer considered prohibited because it contained just minimal amounts of the growth factor. The lawsuit claims the PGA Tour relied on WADAs list of banned substances and methods without doing any of its own research, including whether such substances even provide any performance-enhancing benefits. Singhs lawyers said the tour "rushed to judgment and accused one of the worlds hardest working and most dedicated golfers of violating the rules of the game." The 50-year-old Fijian, inducted into the World Golf Hall of Fame in 2006, hasnt spoken to reporters about any subject since releasing a statement in February confirming that he took the deer antler spray. He declined comment after his opening round. Singh had about a dozen or so spectators following him Thursday, maybe the most telling sign of his career. Singh has the Masters and the PGA Championship among his 34 tour victories. He holds the PGA Tour record with 22 wins since turning 40. His best year was in 2004, when he won nine times. Singh has not won since the Deutsche Bank Championship in September 2008, two months after the tours anti-doping program was launched. Carolina Hurricanes Pro Shop .com) - The Calgary Flames aim to bounce back from their first regulation home loss of the campaign on Friday night when they host a Detroit Red Wings club that they swept in three meetings a season ago. Hurricanes Jerseys 2020 . Zvonareva, who won the tournament in 2009 and 10, couldnt handle her opponents big groundstrokes in only her third event back after 17 months out with a shoulder injury. Zvonareva made her comeback in January in Shenzhen and played in the Australian Open but lost her first matches at both tournaments. . Rob Manfred, baseballs chief operating officer, testified last week during the grievance filed by the players union to overturn Rodriguezs 211-game suspension. A person familiar with the hearing, speaking on condition of anonymity, told The Associated Press on Saturday that Manfred testified the sport wasnt concerned whether Bosch distributed performance-enhancing drugs to minors because MLBs interest was his relationship with players under investigation. PHILADELPHIA -- Jeanmar Gomez and the Phillies bullpen couldnt capitalize on yet another strong starting pitching performance.Sean Rodriguez had a pinch-hit three-run homer in the ninth inning off Gomez, lifting the Pittsburgh Pirates over the Phillies 5-3 on Tuesday night.It overshadowed a quality outing from right-hander Alec Asher, who allowed two runs and four hits in 6 1/3 innings.Our starting pitching the last couple of weeks has been as good as anybody in baseball, Phillies manager Pete Mackanin said, adding Asher was the bright spot tonight.Asher was acquired in the 2015 trade that sent left-hander Cole Hamels to the Texas Rangers.Asher has now allowed just two earned runs (1.46 ERA) in his two starts for the Phillies this season.I thought it went well, said Asher, who threw 95 pitches. I wasnt tired at all.Pittsburgh remained six games behind the Mets for the second NL wild card.Rodriguez hit for pitcher Felipe Rivero (1-5) with two on and one out and drilled a 2-2 pitch from Gomez (3-4) into the second row of seats in right field.It was a tough day for me, Gomez said. It was a slider that was up. Some of my pitches were flat.Rodriguezs home run was his 13th of the season and first since Aug. 14. It was also his first pinch-hit home run since May 25, 2013.Rodriguez put the Pirates ahead after Francisco Cervelli reached on a walk and Jordy Mercer doubled off Gomez.Tony Watson struck out two in the ninth for his 12th save.Playing in just his third major league game, left fielder Roman Quinn had two hits and scored a go-ahead run in the eighth on Freddy Galvis sacrifice fly. In his first 13 big-league plate appearances, Quinn has reached base safely seven times.Hes an exciting player to watch, Mackanin said.Pirates right-hander Ivan Nova entered 5-0 since being acquired from the New Yorrk Yankees on Aug. Stitched Hurricanes Jerseys. 1. He allowed two runs and five hits while recording a season-high 11 strikeouts but left the game in the seventh after throwing 92 pitches.Nova missed the chance to become the second Pirates pitcher to go 6-0 in his first eight starts.I was getting ahead in the count and I threw some good sinkers and that was a good thing for me, Nova said. Theyre an aggressive team and they were out there swinging.Pirates manager Clint Hurdle was ejected for the sixth time this season and the 51st time in his managerial career in the sixth inning. Hurdle vehemently argued with first-base umpire Alan Porter over a call that resulted in Ryan Howard beating out a double-play grounder to bring in the go-ahead run for Philadelphia.The night was a mixed bag for Pirates rookie second baseman Adam Frazier, who gave Pittsburgh a 1-0 lead with an RBI single in the third inning but was thrown out trying to stretch it into a double. Josh Bell followed with a double that would have scored Frazier.Frazier also botched a fourth-inning grounder by Howard that tied the score at 1, had an errant throw on a potential double-play grounder by Maikel Franco that gave the Phillies a 2-1 lead in the sixth and grounded out with the bases loaded to end the seventh with the score tied 2-2 after Jung Ho Kang scored on a wild pitch.UP NEXTPirates: LHP Steven Brault (0-2, 3.38 ERA) will make his sixth career start when the series resumes Wednesday night. The 24-year-old has received just five runs of support in his five previous starts.Phillies: RHP Jake Thompson (1-5, 6.05 ERA) will make his eighth start of the season. The 22-year-old is looking for his first win since Aug. 12. ' ' '