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Follow Tiger Woods’ final round


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SportsPulse: USA TODAY Sports’ Steve DiMeglio discusses the possible head-to-head showdown that Tiger Woods and Phil Mickelson are currently planning.
USA TODAY

Will Tiger Woods finally win his 15th career major title? Let’s just say he has a chance at the PGA Championship.

Woods, who shot a 66 in the third round, will begin his final round 8-under for the tournament and tied for sixth, four shots behind leader Brooks Koepka.

The 42-year-old tees off in the final round of the 100th edition of the PGA Championship at Bellerive Country Club in the third-to-last group at 2:35 p.m. ET alongside Gary Woodland, who held the lead heading into the weekend. 

Follow along shot-by-shot to see how Woods fares. 

Hole 16 – Par 3

Tiger’s tee shot is pin high to the right of the cup, a little over 10-feet left for birdie. At the very least, Tiger has given himself a chance. Those couple unforced errors are going to be really costly. 

Hole 15 – Par 4

Driver here and this one is smoked down the center of the fairway. He really needed that for his confidence. Tiger’s not giving up! He goes right at this pin and almost holes out. That’s another gimme-putt birdie. 5-under thru 15 (13-under for the tournament).

Leaderboard update: Brooks Koepka and Adam Scott are tied at 14-under par, followed by Tiger at 13-under and a host of players at 10-under. 

Hole 14 – Par 4

Well, that’s a momentum killer. Tiger goes back to the trusty iron and he loses this right into the gallery. He just can’t seem to figure it all out at the same time. This is thick and he takes a massive wack at it. He’s short of the bunker in the fairway still with a good look at the cup. Not good there. He leaves this one short, and it’ll be a tough putt for par from there. Wow. He hits this one just about perfect but clips the right edge. Man, that’s unfortunate. Bogey. 4-under thru 14 (12-under for the tournament).

Hole 13 – Par 3

This pin is tucked away to the back right and Tiger goes right at it. He lands his tee shot below the cup and this one rolls up to around 10 feet. Another birdie here would get Tiger just one shot off leader Brooks Koepka. He gave this one a long stare and it pays off. He raises his putter high to the sky as the putt slowly drops. This is getting wild. 5-under thru 13 (13-under for the tournament).

Hole 12 – Par 4

Driver here and it’s perfect down the right side of the fairway. He had absolutely no confidence in this club all day but his last two have been solid. He went pin-seeking here and sticks it about 5-feet from the hole. The greens crew is working on an issue with the hole, and the crowd has now erupted into “Let’s Go Tiger!” and “Let’s Go Gary!” chants. This is fun. He hits the putt and gets to 4-under thru 12 (12-under for the tournament).

Leaderboard update: Brooks Koepka has responded to Tiger’s run and has gotten to 14-under, followed by Tiger and Adam Scott at 12-under. Justin Thomas is in third at 11-under.

Hole 11 – Par 4

This is a driveable par 4 but Tiger lays up with iron. It’s the smart play, but let’s be honest, we all wanted him to grab driver and try to set up an eagle chance. Not a great effort here. He’s on the green and putting for birdie, but he went pin-seeking and threw this one a little long. No way. Tiger hit the just about perfect and it hung on the edge and refused to drop. If he loses by one, that’ll be a heart-breaker. Par. 3-under thru 11 (11-under for the tournament).

Hole 10 – Par 4

Grip it. Rip it. Twirl it. Tiger smokes this drive perfectly down the fairway. The atmosphere at Bellerive is absolutely electric. That’s his first hit fairway of the day. He plays this one safe, finding the middle of the green, way left of the back-right pin placement. He lags this one close, setting up a two-putt par. 3-under thru 10 (11-under for the tournament).

Thoughts at the turn

10 putts. 9 holes. 0 fairways hit. 3-under on the round, 11-under for the tournament and just one shot off the lead. Tiger’s ability to scramble is still second to none. There’s a mess of people within three strokes of the lead, and everything is happening to keep Tiger in contention. He’s under par and within striking distance, and the leaders aren’t pulling away. If Tiger can figure out his driver, we just might have a chance at witnessing major No. 15.

Hole 9 – Par 4

Tiger has been surgical with his driving iron all week, and this one misses left and runs along the cart path. Just like at The Open, everything is happening to keep Tiger in contention, and he’s not taking advantage. This came to rest on a dirt patch off the path, and he plays a massive hook perfectly onto the green. He spun his club and walked after that one knowing it was perfect. He’s got a birdie putt waiting after an awful effort off the tee. He drains it and the gallery goes WILD. It’s the Catalina Wine Mixer! 3-under thru 9 (11-under for the tournament).

Hole 8 – Par 5

If Tiger has any chance to win here today, he needs to score on the two par 5’s. That won’t cut it. This hole is reachable in two for Tiger, but not from where he’ll be. He misses left, way left, and it’s among the gallery in the thick rough. HE’S GOING FOR IT. Tiger pulls 3-wood and catches this one real clean. The pin is on the front of the green, guarded by bunkers on both sides. He runs this one up and a little too far right, finding the greenside bunker. He should be able to get up-and-down there for birdie, par at the worst. His out cozies up nice and close to the hole, that’s a tap-in birdie. 2-under thru 8 (10-under for the tournament).

Leaderboard update: Brooks Koepka leads at 11-under. Justin Thomas had a chance to take the lead with a birdie putt, but he missed from about 6 feet, and then lipped out his par putt. Instead of taking the lead, he’s not in second at 10-under. Tragic three-putt.

Hole 7 – Par 4

Another tee shot misses to the right, and he’s got a tough lie from there. He hasn’t hit a fairway yet. His approach is a little too hot and rolls off the back of the green and into the rough. His chip is pin-high, leaving a slightly-breaking putt for par around four feet. He converts to remain at 1-under thru 7 (9-under for the tournament).

Hole 6 – Par 3

Tiger misses the green here and finds the bunker. He catches this one a little too clean and rolls just off the green onto the fringe. And here comes his first big mistake of the day. He can’t find the line for the par save and taps in for bogey. 1-under thru 6 (9-under for the tournament).

Leaderboard update: Brooks Koepa cards consecutive bogeys to drop to 11-under, where he’s now tied with Justin Thomas in the lead. Seven players are T3 at 9-under: Tiger, Rickie Fowler, Adam Scott, Jason Day, Thomas Pieters, Rafa Cabrera Bello and Tyrrell Hatton. 

Hole 5 – Par 4

Another driver here for Tiger and you guessed it, he misses to the right. This one’s in the trees, rough and gallery. Not good. Tiger gets this one out of the cluster and from there he’s able to get up-and-down from there. Not much to say. Par. 2-under thru 5 (10-under thru tournament).

Hole 4 – Par 4

First time pulling driver here for Tiger, and it’s in the bunker to the right of the fairway. Every other part of his game has been dialed in this week, except for the big stick, and he’s still just two shots back of the leader in sole second place. He plays this one to the fairway, 64 yards from the cup. CLUB TWIRL. He throws another dart at the green, landing this one a little long, but it spins back to just a few feet. Par. 2-under thru 4 (10-under for the tournament).

Leaderboard update: Brooks Koepka is the sole leader at 13-under, followed by Justin Thomas and Tiger who are T2 at 10-under. 

Hole 3 – Par 3

Whoa. The gallery erupted with “GET IN THE HOLE” yells and he just about aced No. 3. You can see his ball mark just inches from the cup. That’s a gimme putt with your friends, but Tiger has to walk up and finish this one off. Chirp-chirp! Back-to-back birdies (should be three in a row). 2-under thru 3 (10-under for the tournament).

Hole 2 – Par 4

Another iron for TW and this one is going down the left side of the fairway and flirting with the water, but he stays dry. Might have an awkward stance here, but he’s safe. Awkward stance? No problem. Tiger is still dialed in with his approach shots like yesterday, with a similar look here on No. 2 that he had on No. 1. He drops the putt and the gallery lets out a massive Tiger roar. Birdie. 1-under thru 2 (9-under for the tournament).

Hole 1 – Par 4

Showtime. Iron off the tee on No. 1 and oh boy, he’s in the bunker. Not a great start seeing as how solid he was yesterday teeing off with his driving iron, but it’s not too much trouble. He went pin-seeking from the bunker and this is a nice shot. He’s just a little above the hole, inside 10 feet. I take that back, it was a great shot with a birdie chance to begin the day. He clips the edge and just like his entire back-nine yesterday, taps in for par. Even thru 1 (8-under for the tournament).

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