On a day when it seemed likeduring Round 3 at the 2018 Quicken Loans National, Abraham Ancer (yes, Abraham Ancer!) wouldn't let him. As Woods faded a bit on the back nine to a 2-under 68, Ancer closed with a 31 on the back to match his 31 on the front and tie the course record (set on Friday) of 62. He now co-leads the event at 13 under after 54 holes along with Francesco Molinari.
Those two are trailed by Zac Blair and Ryan Armour at 11 under. Woods is at 7 under and trails by six.
For Ancer, it was all about his tee-to-green game. He finished in the top five both off the tee and on his approach shots, and made birdie putts of 17 feet, 16 feet and a pair from 10 feet. He was as locked in as he's ever been in his 43-event career on Tour.
He won't, however, be the favorite on Sunday when the leaders tee off. That honor will belong to Molinari, who eschewed the French Open in hopes of racking up some FedEx Cup points this week to go toward securing his PGA Tour card for next season.
The sweet-swinging Italian is riding a mini-heater after winning the European Tour's BMW PGA Championship and nearly winning his home Italian Open. He shot his second straight 5-under 65 on Saturday and birdied the final two holes to secure his place in the final pairing.
Molinari, maybe somewhat surprisingly, doesn't have a win in 120 starts on the PGA Tour. He was one of the favorites coming into this week, though, and with good reason. His game from tee to green is arguably the best in the field, and TPC Potomac can get wily if you get erratic. Molinari has been anything but that. He's hit 48-of-54 (!) greens in regulation this week and is second in the field in strokes gained on approach shots.
He's in that class of players that, when they're feeling it, you're not sure how they're ever not feeling it. I could pretty easily see him shooting a 3-under 67 for the win tomorrow afternoon on a tough, fast course as everyone else falls by the wayside.
Here are three more takeaways from Round 3 of the Quicken Loans National.
1. Slow Beau? Beau Hossler's Round 3 struggles continued on Saturday. The co-leader after 36 holes shot a 1-over 71 after coming in averaging 70.7 strokes in Round 3s so far this year (No. 86 on the PGA Tour). At one point in his round, after thinking he'd hit a ball possibly out of bounds and having to play a provisional, Hossler yelped, "are you s------ me?" which made me laugh and brought a little levity to an otherwise tense day. Hossler is far too talented to be kept out of the winner's circle for long, but he needs to figure out how to play the final 36 the way he plays the first 36 before that happens. He's now five back going into Sunday.
2. Tiger's big chance: You know who didn't hit any putts late on Saturday (17 feet total on the back nine) after he made them all on Friday and on the front nine in Round 3? Yeah, Big Cat. There's a scenario in which I could see him just going bananas with the putter on Sunday afternoon. He'll have to avoid bogeys (which he didn't on Saturday) and make some 10-, 12- and 15-foot putts. But if he gets it going downhill again in the middle of his round, look out for a frenetic finish.
3. ZB locked in: It could have gone so much sweeter for Zac Blair late. Blair missed putts of six feet, six feet and 15 feet over the final three holes and played them in 1 over when 1 under was definitely in play. Still, one of the older souls on the PGA Tour has been cruising around TPC Potomac looking for his first top 10 of the season. His course architecture knowledge and love for the sport are probably unparalleled for players under the age of 30, and it would be cool to see him in the thick of it late on Sunday. Possibly related: he gave us a club twirl for the ages on Saturday afternoon.
CBS Sports was with you the entire way Saturday updating this story with the latest scores, analysis and highlights -- particularly while Woods was on the course. If you are unable to view the live updates below, please click here.
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