July 01, 2018

Woods Finishes Tied for 4th at Quicken Loans National

POTOMAC, Md. – Tiger Woods closed with a 4-under-par 66 and tied for fourth Sunday in the Quicken Loans National at TPC Potomac, his second-best showing of the season.

It marked Woods’ third top-5 finish and fifth top-12 in 11 starts this year on the PGA Tour.

Paired with Bronson Burgoon on another sweltering, sun-baked day, Woods began the final round tied for ninth at 7-under, six strokes off the pace. He pulled within four of the lead after firing a bogey-free 3-under 32 on the front nine, but missed two short putts on the back to derail his pursuit.

Not that he was going to catch Francesco Molinari of Italy. He equaled the course record with a 62 and coasted to an eight-stroke win over Ryan Armour, equaling the largest margin of victory on the PGA Tour this season.

Molinari tallied a 72-hole score of 21-under 259, with Woods checking in at 11-under 269.

“I thought maybe if I shot 30, maybe 29, that would be enough,” said Woods. “Evidently, I would have to shoot 24 on the back nine. What Francesco did was impressive. But I had a legit chance starting that back nine if I posted a number.”

It was another strong performance for the 42-year-old Woods. He tallied six birdies and two bogeys.

“Overall, it was a good, solid day,” he said.

Woods and Molinari collected a tournament-high 21 birdies.

After a par at the first hole, Woods birdied the par-5 second with a superb third shot from thick rough, the ball releasing three feet from the cup. He posted consecutive birdies at the seventh and eighth holes.

At the seventh, Woods slammed a 20-footer, prompting a fist pump and deafening roar from the massive gallery. He poured in a 28-footer at the eighth, the uphill left-to-right putt sneaking into the right side of the cup. This time, Woods dropped to his knees and fist-pumped from there.

He gave himself another great birdie opportunity at the par-5 10th, but couldn’t capitalize from four feet. After a bogey at 11, he kept fighting, lofting a 9-iron at the 166-yard, uphill par-3 12th just inside 10 feet and sunk the birdie putt.

Woods dropped a stroke at the par-4 13th, horseshoeing a three-footer. He was unable to birdie the short par-4 14th, but secured back-to-back birdies at 15 and 16.

After a stress-free, two-putt par from long range at 17, Woods blocked his drive to the right the par-4 18th for the fourth straight day. He did well to slash his second shot from heavy rough off a sidehill lie short-right of the green, nearly the same spot he chipped in for birdie on Friday. This time, he left his third shot about 15 feet short of the pin and drilled the par putt.

“It was nice to make a couple birdies coming in,” said Woods.

He used a new TaylorMade Ardmore 3 putter all week and was pleased with the results. Woods totaled 26 putts on Friday, and 27 on Saturday and Sunday. He made a 125 feet worth of putts in the final round and finished seventh in the field in strokes gained putting.

“I’m seeing the lines again, I’m rolling the ball on my line, I’ve got the speed, and I really like the swing of this putter,” he said.

After hitting 13 of 18 greens in each of the first three rounds, Woods found 14 on Sunday.

He began the week 82nd in the Official World Golf Ranking and is projected to climb to No. 67, his highest position since 2015. Woods also improved to 47th in the FedExCup point standings.

He returns to competition in two weeks at the Open Championship, July 19-22 at Carnoustie Golf Links in Scotland.