PGA Championship: Tiger Woods closes with a 64, finishes second to Brooks Koepka

Blake SchusterYahoo Sports Contributor

It was almost like old times for Tiger Woods in a major golf tournament. Four shots out of the lead going into Sunday’s final round of the PGA Championship, Woods fired a six-under 64 and finished alone in second place, two shots behind Brooks Koepka.

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Round 1 Score: 70
Round 2 Score: 66
Round 3 Score: 66

Here’s how it went down as we tracked Tiger Woods hole-by-hole:

Hole 1, Par 4, 425 yards

Iron shot at the tee box goes 271 yards and slightly to the left, rolling softly into the bunker. That set Woods up for a fantastic escape out of the sand, over the tree line and just a few yards from the pin. His birdie shot just kissed the lip and rolled out. Par. 8-under. T-9 (4 back). 

Hole 2, Par 4, 410 yards

Again using his iron, the tee shot lands just short of the water hazard and it’s no issue for Tiger. He lofts it over the pond with his second shot and spins it back towards the flag yet again for another birdie opportunity. And for the first time in ten tries, Woods finds a birdie with a three-foot putt. Birdie. 9-under (1-under on the day). 3rd Place (3 back). 

Hole 3, Par 3, 148 yards

This is just silly. Using a 9-iron, Tiger goes right at the pin and sticks it inches from the cup. The ball barely moved once it hit the green and for the third time in as many holes it’s a birdie opportunity. Sinks it. Woods was momentarily two-back, but a birdie by Koepka at No. 1 took care of that.  Birdie. 10-under (2-under on the day). 2nd Place (3-back). 

Hole 4, Par 4, 521 yards

Tiger goes to the driver for the first time Sunday and the results are a bit underwhelming. It’s nearly 300 yards off the tee, but the shot stays on a straight line and goes right off the edge and into the bunker. The second shot forced Woods to lay it up out of the sand but he gave himself a great look at the green and escapes with par. In the meantime, Justin Thomas moves to 10-under through five holes and into a tie with Tiger for second. Par. 10-under (2-under on the day). T-2 (3-back). 

Hole 5, Par 4, 471 yards

If Woods wasn’t feeling it before, he certainly is after four holes. On the way to the tee box at five, he’s high-fiving fans and looking confident.

Tiger goes back to the driver and it cuts just to the right and into the rough, bouncing around the crowd but safely away from any further hazards. With 171 yards to the pin, Woods gets extremely aggressive and goes right for the green. He gets it over the trees with a 9-iron but leaves it just off the right of the green and in the rough. Not a bad shot at all given the circumstances. He lofts his third shot onto the green, giving him just three feet to save par again. Up ahead on the course, Thomas finished off another birdie to take sole possession of second place. Par. 10-under (2-under on the day). 3rd Place (3-back).

Hole 6, Par 3, 213 yards

The driver goes away and the irons come back out for this one. And the result isn’t pretty — nor is Tiger’s reaction. Woods first shot goes past the back of the green and lands in the sand trap accompanied by a few angry grunts from Tiger. For the third time in as many holes, he’ll have to save par and like to strike later. But while making his trek up the fairway, Koepka dropped a shot on the fourth hole, putting Tiger just two back again. It’s probably best Tiger didn’t know that. His second shot out of the bunker rolled into the first cut behind the cup, setting up a two-putt for his first bogey on the day. This one is a missed opportunity in many ways. We’ll see how much, if at all, it haunts him. Bogey. 9-under (1-under on the day). T-4 (3 back).

(Insert Spider-man pointing meme here)

Hole 7, Par 4, 394 yards

We’ve got a theme developing off the tee box. Again, Woods goes to the right with his first shot and it ends up in the rough, but with a clear shot at the green. The second shot is on line, but way too strong, rolling off the back of the green and into the rough again. The chip shot settles down about eight feet to the left of the hole. Drains it. Behind him, Koepka drops another shot and now Woods has a birdie-friendly par 5 coming up. Par. 9-under (1-under on the day). T-3 (2 back).

We’ve also got our first shirt change of the day. Not saying, just saying.

Hole 8, Par 5, 610 yards

For the first time all day, Tiger’s tee shot doesn’t go to the right. Instead, it goes far, far left, into the gallery, and this one is going to be an adventure. Now 262 to the hole, he drills it at the pin and watches calmly as it rolls into the bunker short of the green. It sounds a lot worse than it is. Tiger just gave himself a chance to get up and down and come out with a birdie if he plays this trap right. That would pull him into a tie for second on the leaderboard with Thomas once again.

A nice easy swing sets Woods up for a tap-in for birdie. We got ourselves a game again, folks. Birdie. 10-under (2-under on the day). T-2 (1 back).

Hole 9, Par 4, 433 yards

Attempt No. 7 to hit the fairway doesn’t work out. Tiger has yet to find one yet today as this tee shot sails low and left and out of bounds. It’s in the rough to the side of the sand trap with no strong line to the pin. This will get interesting. A few holes back, Koepka sinks a birdie and regains a two-stroke lead.

With 173 yards to the hole, Tiger clears the crowd out, roars back and drills this one to just about 12 feet from the hole. Somehow it’s another birdie opportunity. Who needs fairways?

The birdie falls and, more importantly, we have our first fist pump of the day.  Birdie. 11-under (3-under on the day). 3rd Place (2 back).

Hole 10, Par 4, 508 yards

It took nine holes, but Tiger has found his first fairway of the day. Maybe they aren’t so underrated. It’s dead center and now we get a chance to see what Tiger can do when he isn’t trying to rescue himself.

On second thought, maybe he’s better off missing fairways. Tiger’s second shot lands safely on the green, but about 50 feet or so away from the hole. The birdie shot falls about three feet short and it’s another par. Unfortunately for Woods, Koepka is picking up steam again and is 14-under. Par11-under (3-under on the day). T-3 (3 back).

Hole 11, Par 4, 355 yards

No driver here. Woods finds back-to-back fairways with his iron. Meanwhile, his playing partner Gary Woodland strikes his driver perfectly, lands on the green and will have an eagle opportunity. Makes you wonder if Tiger is second-guessing his shot selection. Woods’ second shot is a little long but stays on the green for a long birdie opportunity. His putt is about as perfect as he could get without falling into the cup. It runs about 20 feet to the edge of the hole and just rests on the lip. Tiger can’t believe it. He’s hunched over while the crowd tries to make enough noise to knock the ball in. This one hurts. Par11-under (3-under on the day). T-4 (3 back).

Hole 12, Par 4, 452 yards

Tiger’s tee shot finds the fairway, and he drops his approach to inside of five feet from the cup. But then he’s forced to wait through a 15-minute delay because playing partner Gary Woodland’s approach damaged the cup. After the cup gets swapped out, Woods sinks the birdie like it’s 2000 all over again. Birdie. 12-under (4-under on the day). T2.

Hole 13, Par 3, 180 yards

He’s rolling now. Woods’ tee shot nestles 10 feet from the cup, and he rolls it in for a birdie, lifting the club before it’s even in. Birdie. 13-under (5-under on the day). Solo 2nd.

Hole 14, Par 4, 410 yards

A bad time for a bad shot. Woods’ tee shot goes way right off the tee and ends in a terrible lie. He’s only able to reach the edge of the green, and his chip leaves him a long 15-footer to save par. Could be the tournament on this hole. And it lips out. With both Brooks Koepka and Adam Scott at -14 behind him, Woods is running out of time. Bogey. 12-under (4-under on the day). Solo 3rd.

Hole 15, Par 4, 495 yards

The driver troubles of the front nine are a distant memory now, as he hammers his tee shot into the heart of the fairway. And then his approach shot is, no joke, one of the finest of his career … it settles one foot from the cup, and he taps in for birdie. He’s now one stroke back. Birdie. 13-under (5-under on the day). Solo 3rd.

Hole 16, Par 3, 237 yards

Woods’ tee shot lands about 20 feet from the pin, a well-placed shot on a very long par-3. His putt comes up just short and left for a tap-in par. He’s running out of holes, one stroke back. Par. 13-under (5-under on the day). Solo 3rd.

Hole 17, Par 5, 597 yards

This marks Woods’ last good chance to get into red numbers and catch Koepka and Scott. And unfortunately for Woods and his fans, it goes south, hard. Woods’ tee shot runs far right, up to the edge of the creek running alongside the hole. At almost the same time, Koepka drains a birdie on 15 to get two strokes up on Tiger and one on Scott. Woods punches out of the creekside, but his approach ends up in a greenside bunker. He leaves himself with a nine-footer to save par. He drains it, but Koepka birdies 16 to go three strokes up. Par. 13-under (5-under on the day). Solo 3rd.

Hole 18, Par 4, 457 yards

The last drive of the day, and of the major season for Woods, and it’s a beauty: right to the heart of the fairway. You have to wonder what the day would have been like could he hit like that earlier. His approach shot leaves him a 15-footer for birdie, and he sinks it for a final-round 64. It won’t be enough, but it’s pretty impressive. Birdie. 14-under (6-under on the day). Solo 2nd.

Tiger Woods starts Sunday’s final round at Bellerive just four strokes off the lead. (AP Photo)
Tiger Woods starts Sunday’s final round at Bellerive just four strokes off the lead. (AP Photo)

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