GFC Search

 

Reed leads by 2 at Doral; Woods 3 back

RSS

Patrick Reed may be one of the youngest players in the field this week at Trump National Doral, but he’s shown no signs of inexperience through 54 holes. Here’s how things look heading into the final round of the WGC-Cadillac Championship, where Reed leads by two:

Leaderboard: Patrick Reed (-4), Hunter Mahan (-2), Jason Dufner (-2), Tiger Woods (-1), Jamie Donaldson (-1), Zach Johnson (Even), Dustin Johnson (Even)

What it means: The leaderboard was a logjam early Saturday, but Reed made a move with an eagle on the par-5 eighth hole and stayed in front for much of the afternoon. He’ll now take a lead into the final round as he looks to win for the third time since August, though the pack chasing him includes the world No. 1, who played his way back into contention with a stellar third round.

Round of the day: Woods carded the low round of the day – and the week – by notching eight birdies en route to a 6-under 66 Saturday. After battling windy conditions over the first two rounds, Woods showed no signs of the strained back that forced him to withdraw from last week’s Honda Classic, instead knocking in putt after putt to climb back into the mix. At 1-under overall, he trails by just three shots as he looks to defend his title at Doral.

Best of the rest: Jimmy Walker displayed the form Saturday that has already netted him three wins this season, as the veteran moved up the standings with a 5-under 67. Walker carded four birdies across a five-hole stretch from Nos. 12-16 and, despite a double bogey on No. 4, he’ll begin the final round inside the top 10, five shots off the pace.

Biggest disappointment: Rory McIlroy had hopes of erasing last week’s disappointment with a win in Miami, but those aspirations took a hit Saturday as the Ulsterman stumbled to a 3-over 75. McIlroy carded double bogeys on a pair of par 5s Saturday, finding the water at both Nos. 8 and 10, and after challenging for the lead earlier in the week he will tee off Sunday in a tie for 19th at 3 over.

Main storyline heading into Sunday: A former national champion at Augusta State, Reed appears unfazed by the pressure this week in Miami, but battling an elite field Sunday afternoon could prove a tall task. While Woods will begin in a tie for fourth, much of the attention will likely go to the four-time winner at Doral as he looks to rebound from last week’s disappointing withdrawal and end debates over his “slow start” to the 2014 season.

Shot of the day: Reed twice appeared dialed in from long distance Saturday. The first shot came at No. 8, where his approach from 227 yards found the green and led to an eagle. Reed again placed an accurate shot at No. 16 where, coming off a bogey, he drove the green at the short par 4 en route to a two-putt birdie that once again gave him sole possession of the lead.

Quote of the day: "As far as most complete round [of the year], absolutely.” - Woods