Tiger Woods Finishes Masters Return With Impressive 69

  • Tiger Woods Finishes Masters Return With Impressive 69

Tiger Woods Finishes Masters Return With Impressive 69

Patrick Reed and Rory McIlroy were just getting started, Reed at 14 under and McIlroy three shots back.

Woods stood 4-over for the tournament after rounds of 73, 75 and par-72 to start his major comeback at Augusta National, after saying his goal for the day was to shoot well enough to finish at level par for 72 holes.

Reed two-putted on No. 18 to beat Rickie Fowler by one stroke for his first career major championship.

Reed ran off three straight birdies around the turn, and he stretched his lead to as many as five shots with his eagles.

To be fair, Reed is a longtime supporter of the Irish, but that won't win him any favors in the Peach State. He is ferocious in match play, especially the team variety, and his singles victory over McIlroy at Hazeltine in the 2016 Ryder Cup led to the nickname of Captain America. "You had to birdie the last".

"I wish I was a little closer to the lead or leading, but I'm in the final group and I've shot 65 on moving day at the Masters".

How Woods' Masters performance is judged will depend on perspective.

The only thunder was on the ground, not in the sky, a series of ear-splitting roars for Patrick Reed and his two eagles, Rory McIlroy and his final birdie, and everyone else who tried desperately to keep up with them in the Masters.

"Spieth turned to his caddy and seemed to say, 'You've got to be kidding me" after the putt dropped.

Hoffman flirted with the bunker left of the 16th green, only to catch a fortuitous kick that sent the ball right into the hole. His only late blemish was missing a 9-foot par putt at No. 18.

Trailing by three shots to start the final round, he closed to within one shot after two holes.

"Just playing golf. You know, every time I come to a major, I always think, oh, well, it's a major, and I try to put too much on it". That was as close as he came.

And although it was not the collapse of 2011, when he enjoyed a four-shot lead after 54 holes before crashing to a closing 80, the Northern Irishman can be forgiven for wondering if his place in history will remain elusive. From 200 yards to four feet, just like that.

"Things are progressing", said Woods.

Three-time Masters victor Phil Mickelson, one of the pre-tournament favorites, wrapped up one of his most disappointing appearances in the Masters with his best round of the week, a 67, to finish at 2 over.

Reed is seeking his first major championship.

Fowler was in prime position previous year, standing one stroke off the pace entering the final round before posting a 76 that dropped him down into a tie for 11th behind Sergio Garcia.