Woods stays solid as List, Lovemark lead

Lawrence Cooper
February 25, 2018

Tiger Woods has made it to the weekend at The Honda Classic at PGA National.

Former US Open victor Webb Simpson (72) is among a four-way tie for third at two under.

At that point, Woods was tied for 10th place and only three strokes behind the lead.

"This is a hard golf course right now", Woods told reporters after Friday's round. "I'm trying to make a lot of pars, maybe sprinkle in a birdie here or there". I've enjoyed every single challenge and having to sit out on the sidelines is not fun - especially since I know the golf course.

And he has plenty of company. He has four on the European Tour, including one at the beginning of 2018 at the Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship.

PGA champion Justin Thomas, Daniel Berger and Morgan Hoffmann opened with 67 each. Overnight joint leaders Eddie Pepperell and Gregory Havret shot 69s to go to 10 under, and they were joined by Erik van Rooyen (66) and Stephen Gallacher (66). He played alongside Woods this week for the first time in his career.

"Maybe some junior event", he said. "It was a tough day out there for all of us, and even par is a good score". Whether you shoot two 80s or you lead after two rounds, you can see what you need to do and see where your game is. More aggravating to the players are the greens, which are old and bare, firm and crusty.

Defending champion Rickie Fowler was not as fortunate.

And the now 42-year needed no prompting he is now very much in the "ball game". He was short-sided in a bunker and left his chip shot just short of the putting surface, blading a sand wedge up and missing his bogey putt when he said a gust of wind affected his balance.

Woods made a double bogey at that hole and another at 16, but a birdie at the 17th saw him into one over.

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"That was kind of a fluke", List said. "It's going to be that type of week".

McIlroy plays a drop shot from the 17th hole.

And there was another guy four shots behind. Woods hit 8 of 14 fairways and 11 of 18 greens during the second round and needed 28 putts. He barely got it out and then had a 13-footer for par.

List tallied five birdies and one bogey Friday to post the lowest score among the 141 participants who remained from the field of 144. "It's so tough in the wind, you have to hit the ball so well to hit your targets". He misread the speed and the line, so badly that it was similar to a vehicle driving from Chicago to Denver and winding up in Phoenix. It cost him a bogey, ending his bogey-free run on the day.

But Woods did comeback on the next hole, the tough 17th, a par-3 of 182 yards that also is guarded by water.

He was hitting fairway after fairway, green after green, along with making very few mistakes.

A total of 36 balls found the water there Friday, but Woods carved a 5-iron up into the air and watched it fade toward the hole, stopping 10 feet away.

He went with the 5-iron. "So that's one of the reasons why I started that thing pretty far left and hit a pretty big cut in there, because I had just too much stick".

It landed 12 feet below the hole for a birdie putt. He felt the same way as Woods. "I'm really pleased the way I played".

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