Tiger Woods Cools Off, Shoots Final-Round 72 at Genesis Open 2019

Tyler Conway@jtylerconwayFeatured ColumnistFebruary 17, 2019

Tiger Woods hits from the green side bunker and holes out for birdie on the 16th hole during the final round of the Genesis Open golf tournament at Riviera Country Club on Sunday, Feb. 17, 2019, in the Pacific Palisades area of Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Ryan Kang)
Ryan Kang/Associated Press

Tiger Woods' scorching 65 in Round 3 put him on the outskirts of contention.

Unfortunately, he could not keep his hot streak going when he returned to the course.

Woods carded a one-over 72 to go into the clubhouse in a tie for 18th place at six-under overall.

The former world No. 1 completed his third round early Sunday morning before playing a full 18 to close out the event. His streak of playing the back nine at the Riviera Country Club continued—he made the turn at two-under after going five-under on the back in Round 3—but things fell apart once he made the turn.

Tiger's final nine holes had almost nothing go right. Bad tee shots cost him strokes on Nos. 2 and 3. A bizarre miss from just over two feet out on No. 5 saw him go from a birdie chance all the way to dropping a bogey, at which point it was clear the round was off its rails.

He managed to play the final four holes even, but the stats tell the story of a round gone awry. The PGA's strokes gained metric shows he lost more than a stroke by missing makable puts alone, and he hit only two-thirds of his greens in regulation in the final round.

Fatigue was undoubtedly a factor for Tiger, who had to get up before dawn so he could be on the course and finish his third round. The Genesis Open conditions were trying for everyone, but this is where the difference between 43 and 33 can be insurmountable.

Tiger at certain points in Round 4 looked like he was just trying to play out the string and get off the course—unsurprising given the scattershot way this tournament played out and his own struggles.

On the bright side, this is a far better result than when he was teetering on the cut line early Saturday. Tiger has no history of success in this event; he's now winless in his 12 appearances at the Genesis Open.

"It is certainly a love-hate relationship," Woods told reporters Wednesday. "I love playing this golf course. I always have, I enjoyed playing up here when I was young with my dad. For some reason I've only played well here one time in the tournament. It's just one of those courses that, you have to hit the golf ball well. There's no faking it around this golf course."

The flash he showed early on in the third round is proof Tiger's peak is still in line with the top golfers in the world. At age 43, though, it's hard to expect any sort of consistency.

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