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U.S. Open Chase Begins At The Olympic Club

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The U.S. Open Championship Trophy rests on the 8th teebox at The Olympic Club on March 19, 2012 in San Francisco, California.  The Olympic Club is the site for the 2012 U.S. Open that will be played on June 14-17.  (Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)

The U.S. Open Championship Trophy rests on the 8th teebox at The Olympic Club on March 19, 2012 in San Francisco, California. The Olympic Club is the site for the 2012 U.S. Open that will be played on June 14-17. (Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — The U.S. Open has begun, with light fog blanketing the course.

Shane Bertsch, Martin Flores and Tommy Biershenk teed off in the first group at The Olympic Club just after 7 a.m. Thursday. All three landed in the rough on the par-4 ninth, perhaps an indication of what awaits this week.

Tiger Woods, Phil Mickelson and Bubba Watson are to tee off shortly after them. Defending champion Rory McIlroy, top-ranked Luke Donald and Lee Westwood have an afternoon start.

This marks the first time Woods and Mickelson have been paired in the championship since Torrey Pines in 2008, when the USGA grouped players off the world ranking. That was also the last time Woods won a major.

Copyright 2012 The Associated Press.

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