Sergio Garcia enters 16th Masters with momentum

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AUGUSTA, Ga. — Sergio Garcia is entering his 16th Masters Tournament with momentum, both from this year and from previous tries at Augusta National Golf Club.

Garcia has finished in the top 25 in each of his six PGA Tour events this year, including four top-10 finishes. He finished third in the Houston Open on Sunday.

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Despite having a strong year so far, Garcia is down-playing its significance heading into this week.

“I’ve been playing well, which is nice, but every week is different, and you never know what will happen and how you feel at the start of the week,” he said. “Hope­ful­ly, I’ll be one of the favorites when it comes down to Sun­day, but early on I think everybody has a chance.”

Garcia has improved on his Masters finishes each of the past three years, from a tied for 35th in 2011 to an eighth-place tie last year.

Sergio Garcia, left, of Spain, and Thorbjorn Olesen, of Denmark, walk to the 15th green during a practice round for the Masters golf tournament Wednesday, April 9, 2014, in Augusta, Ga. (AP Photo/Chris Carlson)

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Sergio Garcia, left, of Spain, and Thorbjorn Olesen, of Denmark, walk to ... more >

His best Masters finish was a tie for fourth in 2004.

Garcia, 34, said his game has felt “so-so” early in the week, but veteran patience could prove key. He also has the experience of holding a brief Masters lead after the first round in 2013.

“When the tournament starts (Thurs­day), hopefully, I’ll feel good and get something going and be in contention,” he said. “My main goal is to do my best and enjoy it as much as possible.”

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