Tiger Woods Friday live blog: Tiger shoots two over, but makes clutch birdie on final hole
After an opening even-par 71, Tiger Woods looked to move into contention in the second round of the Wells Fargo Championship. Instead he had to scramble to make the cut, holing his last putt for birdie to sneak inside the number at two-over par. Below a recounting of his day.
12:43 p.m.: WOW! After a perfect tee shot and approach, Tiger rolls in a 10-foot curler for his first birdie of the day. That gets him back to two over, which looks likely to be the cut line. CLUTCH CITY! OK, so it wasn't quite Torrey Pines in 2008, but still, that was pretty cool. Woods also birdied his final hole of the second round in his first start this year to make the cut on the number. Check out the final putt:
Great putt, great reaction, but overall, not a great day, particularly with the flatstick. Take a look at these stats:
"If I just putt normal," Woods told reporters after his round, "I'm five, six under par."
That's right, Tiger. And now you've got the rest of the afternoon to figure it out on the practice green before tomorrow. Get on that.
UPDATE: Tiger did just that!
Just a hunch, but he'll putt better over the weekend.
12:24 p.m.: Needing a birdie, Woods goes with The SMOKE WAGON on the 347-yard eighth hole (his 17th of the day) and pipes a perfect tee shot. But a poor pitch shot leaves him with a 24-footer for birdie, which, of course, he misses. Three over. One hole to go. This very well might be the last live Tiger blog we do this week. . .
12:10 p.m.: The cut line is officially an issue for Tiger Woods. Needing a birdie on the par-5 7th, Woods laid up, but hit a fantastic approach shot that spun back to six feet. But another semi-close miss with terrible speed (this time, he rammed his putt by) kept him without a birdie on his card. Woods will probably have to change that over these last two holes if he's going to stick around for the weekend.
11:50 a.m.: Well, we have something different to report. And it's not good. After hitting the second-closest shot of the day on the 229-yard, par-3 sixth, Woods rams his birdie putt about four feet by, and. . . misses the comebacker for a stunning three-putt. The bogey drops him to three over and outside the current cut line. . .
11:35 a.m.: Let's just save some time here: PAR. (Actually, Tiger almost, almost made his first birdie of the day, but his 30-footer came up about an inch short. Four holes to go.)
11:18 a.m.: More excitement from Tiger on the par-3 4th! Woods hits his tee shot to 40 feet and TWO-PUTTS! Another par! (For the day, that's 13 holes. 11 pars. Two bogeys. Not great.)
11:05 a.m.: Maybe it's time we adjust our expectations for the day to make this round seem more fun. In that case. . . Tiger made another par! And it was pretty awesome! He hit a rare bad tee shot, a decent punch shot up by the green, a pitch to six feet, and. . . BANG! WOO! What a par! (He's still two over.)
10:45 a.m.: Another up and down for par on the second hole gives Woods a little more confidence with the putter, but doesn't do much to jumpstart this flat round. Tiger remains at two over.
10:25 a.m.: Woods continues his birdie draught, but he does save par after going long with his approach on the par-4 1st. In the group ahead, Justin Thomas, who has a great chance to move to No. 1 in the Official World Golf Ranking this week, is making a bit of a move. After an early bogey dropped JT to three over, he's now back to even.
10:10 a.m.: For a second straight day, Woods hits a brilliant approach inside 10 feet on the par-4 18th. And for the second straight day, he misses the birdie putt. The latest wasted opportunity caps a frustrating two-over 38 on his first nine. Woods is currently seven back of leader John Peterson and sits right on the cut line at two over.
Speaking of Peterson, he's about to retire. At 29. Seriously. Well, unless he does something special this week. Cool story.
9:53 a.m.: OK, finally, somewhat of a highlight. Sorta. After a poor tee shot on the intimidating par-3 17th, Woods nearly holes a long chip shot. He settles for a tap-in par to remain at two over. Playing partner Brooks Koepka finds the water and makes double.
9:42 a.m.: Woods handles the par-4 16th with relative ease. His drive trickles into the left rough, but he bounces his approach shot to a front pin to about 30 feet and two-putts for par. Sorry, nothing too exciting thus far. And since there have been so few no real highlights from Tiger thus far, let's check out one from one of his playing partner, Patrick Reed:
9:25 a.m.: This is getting rough. You can't hit a better tee shot than the one Tiger hit on the par-5 15th. His second wasn't as on point, but it took a brutal bounce into a greenside bunker. The third shot was all on Woods, though, as he chunked his third. After two putts, he walked away with a disappointing par to stay at two over. Onto THE GREEN MILE. . .
9:06 a.m.: So much for taking advantage of the short par-4 14th. Woods hits a poor 3-wood that leaves him an awkward 94-yard bunker shot. He finds the front of the green, but three-putts from 60 feet to fall to two over. He's probably going to have a little extra smoke coming off The SMOKE WAGON on the next tee. . .
8:46 a.m.: Woods' wastes another great birdie opportunity on the par-3 13th. After hitting a fantastic tee shot from 213 yards to 12 feet below the hole, Woods misses the putt to remain at one over on the day and for the week. With the drivable par-4 14th and the par-5 15th coming up, Woods needs to get something going before entering THE GREEN MILE.
8:34 a.m.: Another hole, another disappointing result for Woods. This time, he hit a perfect stinger off the tee on the par-4 12th and then stuck his approach to eight feet. However, his birdie attempt doesn't even scare the hole and he remains at one over.
8:17 a.m.: Tough break for Tiger on his second hole, the par-4 11th. After piping a 3-wood down the middle, Woods appears to hit a nice approach shot, but it has just a bit too much spin and he winds up 20 yards short of the green. From there he fails to get up and down. Ouch. One over.
8:04 a.m.: Woods hits a solid second shot, a fairway wood that finds the front left bunker. From there he hits a good sand shot to 12 feet, but misses the birdie putt and -- like we saw on several occasions on Thursday -- leaves himself with a tester for par. He makes the four-footer to remain at even par.
7:43 a.m.: Tiger goes with driver, AKA The Smoke Wagon, off the par-5 10th hole and finds the right rough. Not bad, but not great, like most of his tee shots on Thursday. Woods should still manage better than the sloppy bogey he made on this hole yesterday.
7:20 a.m.: Before Tiger tees off, here are some pretty cool photos of his famous putter, courtesy of PGA Tour's Jonathan Wall:
Woods' trusty club wasn't so trusty on Thursday, ranking 124th out of 156 in strokes gained putting. But when you've won 13 majors, you're allowed an off day every once in awhile.