Tough day at Pebble Beach for Woods, Mickelson
June 15, 2019
By Ben Everill, PGATOUR.COM
- Tiger Woods and Phil Mickelson shot 71 and 75, respectively, on Saturday at the U.S. Open. (Ezra Shaw, Ross Kinnaird/Getty Images)
PEBBLE BEACH, Calif. – Tiger Woods is unlikely to be adding a second U.S. Open at Pebble Beach to his resume and Phil Mickelson’s dream of the career Grand Slam are all but over for another year after a rough day on the Monterey Peninsula.
Woods put together an even-par 71 on Saturday to remain even par for the tournament, currently well off the pace of Gary Woodland. His quest for a record-tying 82nd PGA TOUR win will likely have to wait.
It was a rollercoaster effort from Woods, who had five birdies and five bogeys over the course of his round.
“I got off to a crap start, 2-over through three, and those are the easier holes. And I had to try to fight back and claw out a round today, which I was able to do,” Woods said.
The 15-time major championship winner was wearing kinetic tape on his neck throughout the round but played down any injury concerns. Woods withdrew from the Arnold Palmer Invitational presented by Mastercard earlier this season with a neck complaint. The precaution is a result of the four back surgeries and subsequent swing adjustments he’s had in his career.
“When it's cold like this, everything is achy. It's just part of the deal,” Woods said of the tape.
“It's all the same. It's been like that for years. The forces have to go somewhere. And if they're not in the lower back, they're in the neck, and if not, they're in the mid-back, and if not, they go to the knee. You name it.
“Let me put it this way, I feel every shot I hit. I think that's always going to be the place from here going forward.”
Mickelson had a chance to sit above Woods on the leaderboard heading to Sunday, having birdied the 12th hole to move to 2-under. However, bogeys on Nos. 14 and 17 put him under the gun to make something happen on the par-5 18th.
Unfortunately for the six-time U.S. Open runner-up, he hit his tee shot into Carmel Bay and eventually walked off with a triple bogey. His 4-over 75 leaves him 3-over for the championship and needing nothing short of a miracle to become just the sixth man to win the career Grand Slam.
“Certainly I'm disappointed. I felt like I played a lot better than I'm scoring. And certainly didn't finish this round very well,” Mickelson said.
“I'll come out tomorrow and play as well as I can. But today was the day I needed to go low. I played well enough to do it. I had many opportunities. Didn't putt well. Didn't get them to go in. I left them short the whole time. And then I finished poorly.”