Tiger Woods score: Big Cat narrowly makes the cut at Wells Fargo Championship in Round 2
Woods did not putt well again on Friday, and he'll need to improve that area over the weekend
New day, same story for Tiger Woods on Friday in Round 2 of the 2018 Wells Fargo Championship. As was the case on Thursday, Woods hit the ball well but couldn't find the cup with his putter. A birdie-free first 17 holes on Friday finally got an exclamation mark with a 13-foot putt at the last for his only circle on the scorecard. The birdie gave him a 2-over 73 and put him at 2 over for the event, which is narrowly enough to make the cut (though he'll have an early tee time on Saturday).
Woods missing the cut here would not have been a huge surprise. Despite winning this tournament in 2007, he failed to make the weekend in each of his last two appearances at Quail Hollow (in 2010 and 2012). However, the way Woods fell to that 2-over number has been a stunner. He struck the ball quite well in the first two rounds (top 10 in strokes gained tee to green) but putted as badly as we've seen him put in a while (bottom 15 in strokes gained putting).
Big Cat lost over a stroke to the field with his flat stick on Thursday, and he was much worse on Friday. He lost nearly three (!) strokes to the field in Round 2 and missed putts from five, seven and nine feet for par. Two of those were three-putt bogeys, and just for good measure, he also missed a very makable nine-footer for birdie on his 16th hole of the day.
On Thursday, it was very much the speed of the greens that fooled Woods, but on Friday it seemed to be more of an alignment issue. Woods was not touching the hole from distances that used to be automatic for him and, at the very least, should be near-misses for a PGA Tour pro.
On the bright side, Woods is hitting the ball quite well with his new irons. After hitting 13 of 18 greens in regulation in Round 1 on Thursday, Woods did so again on Friday. He left himself about 13 feet further on average in his approach shots, but a two-day total average of just under 40 feet to the hole on his approaches should certainly not result in 64 putts over two days.
Quail Hollow is a tough track, and Woods should be down for a brawl on the weekend. He's nine back of the leaders and among a bunched-up group of chasers. There is precedent here, too. Rory McIlroy made the cut on the number in 2010 and went on to win the tournament. Woods will have to find a putting stroke in the next 24 hours, though, or he'll have another early tee time on Sunday morning. And that would be a shame considering how well he's currently striking it.
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