Francesco Molinari delivered a record performance to win the final edition of the Quicken Loans National. Molinari closed with an 8-under 62 and set the tournament record at 21-under 259 overall.
At 13-under 197, Molinari and Ancer will start Sunday’s final round two shots clear of Americans Zac Blair and Ryan Armour. His back-nine birdies were putts of nine, eight and 15 feet, respectively.
That was the case again when Woods took momentum to the back nine at TPC Potomac and then missed a birdie putt from 6 feet on the 10th.
However, Molinari finished his round with pars on the final four holes.
Now the 35-year old Italian not only is on the verge of a first PGA Tour victory but he can also lift Italian golf to become only the second Italian to win since Naples-born Toney Penna captured the 1947 Atlanta Open.
Francesco Molinari shot an eight under round of 62 on Sunday to win the Quicken Loans National.
But Woods was just two shots out of second, a crucial difference as it relates to some of his other goals this year.
“I don’t have a definite answer, but I think the first part of the season probably I wasn’t playing quite as well as I am, as I have been in the past month or so”.
It was also an encouraging week for Tiger Woods as he continues to improve since his return to the circuit, the American shooting 66 to finish 10 shots behind the victor in a tie for fourth on his last start before the British Open.
Woods responded, however, with a dramatic 25-foot birdie putt at the par-3 ninth, giving a double fist pump of satisfaction as the crowd erupted in cheers. Horschel carded a 68 to stay one stroke off the lead, tied for fourth with Molinari, who came in with his own 65 in the second round. Molinari, expected to be a member of the European Ryder Cup team, shot 65.
“I was hitting the ball well”, said the 27-year-old.
Molinari called the beginning of his back nine “incredible” which he played the first five holes at six under par, including a 48-foot eagle putt that he buried on the 10 hole.
The 14th is a drivable par-4, and Woods hit the green both days, only to see the ball bound over. The bad news: Woods was last in the field in putting from inside 10 feet, making 60 of 73. “Really proud of what I’ve done and I hope a lot of guys back home were watching”.
CBS Sports will be with you the entire way Sunday updating this story with the latest scores, analysis and highlights – particularly while Woods is on the course.
“It feels great. I played awesome”, Ancer said.
Ancer, Armour, Kang and Bronson Burgoon (68) – who shared sixth with Beau Hossler (68) at 10 under – earned spots in the British Open.
Tiger Woods walks on the eighth hole during the final round of the Quicken Loans National golf tournament, Sunday, July 1, 2018, in Potomac, Md.
Nine strokes behind Ryu entering the day, the 19-year-old Hataoka – coming off a win at the NW Arkansas Championship – almost pulled off one of the biggest comebacks in LPGA Tour history.