Tiger Woods got off to a scorching start to his third round Saturday at the Farmers Insurance Open at Torrey Pines in La Jolla, Calif., so much so that even after shooting over par on the back nine, he enters Sunday squarely in the mix.
With the field cut and everyone playing on the South Course, Woods shot a 3-under par 69, his second 69 of the tournament, to finish at 7-under 209 and tied for 14th through three rounds. Spain's Jon Rahm shot the day's best round, a 7-under 65, and sits in first at 12 under through 54 holes.
Starting the day tied for 17th and six shots out of the lead, Woods birdied the par-4 first, the par-3 third, and the two par 5s on the front nine, Nos. 6 and 9. At the time he made the turn, Woods was only two shots behind the leaders, who were just starting their day.
After parring the par-4 10th, the 44-year-old eight-time winner at Torrey Pines bogeyed the par-3 11th to slide back to 3 under for the round. He shot for par on his final eight holes, but saved perhaps his best shot for his final hole.
After finding the bunker with his drive on the par-5 18th, Woods got out of the sand with his second shot, but then went over the green and into another bunker with his approach. After getting the ball onto the green, Woods made a 15-foot putt for par to end the day.
"It was important to make that putt to salvage the round there toward the end and get some kind of positive momentum going into tomorrow," Woods said on TV immediately following his round, per Golfweek.
In all, Woods said he was pleased with his short game, allowing his putter to not have to work too hard on the day.
"I think that most of my putts that I made were all uphill," Woods said. "It's important to leave the ball in the correct spots and when I did, I poured them in there."
Woods, whose eight wins at Torrey Pines include the 2008 U.S. Open at Torrey Pines, is seeking a record 83rd career PGA Tour victory. He currently shares the record with Sam Snead.