Tiger Woods Thrives, Shoots 5 Under in 2nd Round of WGC-Mexico Championship 2019

Kyle Newport@@KyleNewportFeatured ColumnistFebruary 22, 2019

MEXICO CITY, MEXICO - FEBRUARY 22: Tiger Woods of the United States plays his shot from the 11th tee during the second round of World Golf Championships-Mexico Championship at Club de Golf Chapultepec on February 22, 2019 in Mexico City, Mexico. (Photo by Hector Vivas/Getty Images)
Hector Vivas/Getty Images

Tiger Woods is in the hunt at the 2019 WGC-Mexico Championship at Club de Golf Chapultepec in Mexico City after posting a five-under 66 in the second round Friday.      

After shooting an even-par 71 in the opening round Thursday, Woods found himself eight strokes back of leader Rory McIlroy. He began to dig himself out of the hole, though, nearly from the start of Day 2.

Woods' second round began with a pair of even pars on the back nine, but once he made his way to the tee on the 12th hole, he began to hit his groove. He would birdie the 12th to move to under par, and that was the start of a four-hole stretch in which he nabbed three birdies:

He suffered a hiccup with a bogey on hole No. 17, but a birdie on the 18th helped him finish the back nine with a three-under 33:

One round after he had managed just one birdie on the back nine, he recorded an impressive four.

As ESPN's Bob Harig pointed out, Woods enjoyed some promising trends to start the day:

He carried his momentum to the front nine. Woods didn't let the memory of a double bogey on hole No. 1 on Thursday carry over, as he shot an even par this time around. Then, he continued his climb up the leaderboard with a birdie on the par-three No. 3:

At that point, the leaderboard was getting interesting. McIlroy had lost his spot in first after recording a bogey and a double bogey on the back end of the front nine. That appeared to open the door for Woods to continue to make moves with a strong finish to the day.

The 43-year-old American continued to make progress as he moved into the top 10 soon after:

But he wasn't done. 

After landing himself in the bunker on the ninth, Woods managed to recover with a ridiculous shot to the green:

That helped save par, giving him a 66 for Round 2. 

As the Golf Channel's Justin Ray noted, Woods is no stranger to a score like that. In fact, nobody on the tour has accomplished that more than the 14-time major champ.

When he left the course, he trailed Dustin Johnson by six strokes. Woods has also found himself in a tie for eighth place. There was still plenty of golf to be played as Woods finished his round, meaning a lot can change on the leaderboard before he tees off Saturday. But after a strong Round 2, he enters moving day within striking distance.

Woods is looking to capture his eighth career WGC-Mexico Championship title and his first since 2013. 

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