January 25, 2014
By Brian Wacker, PGATOUR.COM
- Tiger Woods carded a 79 in Round 3, tied for the third-worst of his career on the PGA TOUR. (Warshaw/Getty Images)
LA JOLLA, Calif. --Tiger Woods achieved another career first Saturday at Torrey Pines, albeit a dubious one.
After a stunning 79 in the third round of the Farmers Insurance Open, Woods missed the secondary cut in a PGA TOUR event for the first time in his career.
Because more than 78 players made the 36-hole cut there will be another cut to the top 70 and ties following the third round. Woods tied for 80th, one spot out of last, in his 2014 debut.
That Woods won't be around on Sunday at a tournament he has won seven times was surprising. That he played as poorly as he did, closing in 42 and at one point playing a seven-hole stretch in 9 over, was shocking.
"It was definitely different seeing him making so many bogeys," said playing partner Jhonattan Vegas. "You don't expect to see that out of him. He kept making mistakes."
The 79 matches Woods' third-highest score of his career on the PGA TOUR and came within two strokes of tying his career high round of 81 in brutal conditions at the 2002 Open Championship at Muirfield.
The last time he shot a score this high was a 79 in the third round of the 2013 Memorial Tournament presented by Nationwide Insurance. He finished near the bottom of the leaderboard that week.
This time, he won't even get that chance.
Woods, who didn't speak to media after his round, was 1 under on the day when he reached the par-5 18th (his ninth). After laying up short of the green, he dumped his next shot into the water. He went on to make double bogey.
One hole later, Woods missed the green to the right on his approach before three-putting from 27 feet on the par 4.
He bogeyed each of the next five holes before finally ending the streak with a birdie from just inside six feet on the par-4 seventh. Woods smile, doffed his hat and took a bow.
There wasn't much else to smile about for the world No. 1, who recorded his worst career score in the event, besting a 77 he shot here in 2002. Just as remarkable is that Woods didn't birdie a single par 5. In fact, he played them in 4 over for the week.
Woods hit just six fairways, seven greens and took 29 putts in the third round, and he needed to scramble just to break 80, chipping in on the eighth and knocking in a 10-foot putt for par on the last.
Earlier in the week, Woods said his game wasn't rusty and was only a fraction off. It hardly looked that way Saturday.
Woods' coach Sean Foley summed up the week by pointing out that his pupil was just three rounds into his season after a six-week break. Still, only once prior to this week had Woods finished outside the top 10 at Torrey Pines. That was in 2011 when he was undergoing a swing change.
Woods will now head to the Dubai Desert Classic next week. His next start on TOUR will likely come at next month's World Golf Championships-Accenture Match Play Championship or The Honda Classic.