Barring something miraculous, it doesn’t look like either Phil Mickelson or Tiger Woods will be walking away with the U.S. Open trophy come Sunday.
Through two rounds, both are frustrated, especially Woods, who was running a little hot after a bogey-bogey finish on Friday.
Woods finished his day with a one-over par 72 thanks to that finish. He’s even par for the championship but has a lot of talent in front of him as he finds himself tied for 32nd.
Mickelson bested Woods by three shots on day two with a 69 but that put him at one-under for the championship and tied for 27th, meaning that Jim Nance’s prediction for a Mickelson victory at age 49 is a long-shot at best.
Woods had smoke coming out of his ears after his day and blew off FOX sports when they asked to put him on camera. He did talk to some media members:
“Yeah, I’m a little hot right now,” Woods admitted. “I just signed my card about a minute ago. So need a little time to cool down a little bit. Yeah, right now I’m still in the ball game. There’s so many guys with a chance to win. We’ve got a long way to go, and, you know, we’ll see how it shapes up for tomorrow (Saturday).
Woods pointed out that the course was changing from Thursday:
“The golf course can be a little bit faster, a little bit more springy than it was today, and scores will continue to back up a little bit. It’s just a matter of leaving the ball in the right spots. And yesterday I did that; today I didn’t. I was above the hole. And just wasn’t as crisp as I needed to be to put the ball below the hole each and every shot. So I had puttable putts and I could take a lot of the bounciness out of it. Today I just couldn’t do that.”
Woods hasn’t been able to make enough birdies to contend. He had three on Thursday and only one on Friday.
Mickelson, on the other hand, has made eight birdies but seven bogeys have kept him away from the top of the scoreboard.