6:55pm ET: Phil Mickelson wins his 3rd green jacket after an exclamation point birdie on the last hole. What an incredible week it has been for me in particular, as I was on the grounds at Augusta National for the first time. What a tournament. What a place. And I’m spent.
Good news: only 361 days left until the 2011 Masters.
6:40pm: Westwood makes birdie on #17 but Phil handles the pressure making a par putt from about six feet. Two shot lead with the final hole to play. It ain’t over yet. Woods finishes with a 69 after making birdie on the final hole. Strangely, he and Choi played together for four straight days and shot the exact same scores all four days.
6:28pm: After making par on the beautiful 16th hole, Mickelson has a three shot lead (-15) with two to play. Fred Couples shoots 70. Had couples made some short and mid length putts he could have been more of a factor.
6:18pm: Phil reached #15 in two with a 7-iron and two putted for a birdie. Mickelson has a three shot lead with three to play as Westwood couldn’t match birdies. Ricky Barnes guaranteed himself a spot on next year’s Masters with a chip in on the 18th.
6:05pm: Phil has a two shot lead with four to play after hole #14. He’s in the fairway on #15 in good shape. The tournament is his to win. After his previous three putt, Tiger makes eagle on #15 for a Masters record tying four eagles for the week. Anthony Kim has posted a number, -12 with a 65. He’s in the clubhouse.
5:50pm: Phil missed a three foot eagle putt. I fell out of my chair a 2nd time in the last 10 minutes. He and Westwood make birdie to reach -14 and -12 respectively. Choi looked unstoppable until he just made two bogeys in a row. Tiger Woods just three putted from about 15 feet on #14 for a bogey and is now six shots behind.
5:43pm: OMG Phil Mickelson hit one of the most incredible shots I’ve ever seen. He went for the green in two on #13 from the trees and pine straw. The ball landed softly over the creek and settled about three feet below the hole for an eagle attempt. Absolutely amazing.
5:34pm: Anthony Kim just birdied #16. He is on FIRE, going -5 in four holes. Choi barely got out of the trap and could be in 3-putt land. Couples makes birdie on #14 to make up two of the three shots he lost on Amen Corner. Westwood pushed his drive right on #13.
5:30pm: #12 is a pivotal hole and Phil Mickelson just made birdie to take the solo lead again. Meanwhile Choi is in the back bunker on #13 with an incredibly difficult shot coming up. Anyone have some prozaq?
5:25pm: Tiger fatted his one handed shot on #13, followed by a “Jesus Christ” and some other commentary about being stuck behind the ball. Couples birdied #13. No gag water balls on #12 for the final group. Phil is about 15-20 behind the hole on #12 and Westwood is safely in the middle of the green on #12. Anthony Kim as made three birdies in a row at 13-14-15 and is now one behind the leaders. He’s on #16 tee.
5:02pm: OMG Fred found the water on 12. That may be the end of his hopes. Tiger hit a tree on #11 and stayed in the trees. He followed up with an incredible shot to about five feet. Choi is just plugging along, not making mistakes. Meanwhile back at the tee, Phil knocks another driver in the trees. Phil would be well advised to ditch the driver the rest of the way.
5:00pm: Phil found the trees right on #10 but made it up and down for par. KJ Choi is now tied for the lead after a great birdie on #10. Tiger Woods has hit another one handed drive and is way right on #11. He’s over by the concession stand which I’ve never seen shown on TV. Freddy bogeyed #11 after a pushed short par putt.
4:25pm: The back nine at Augusta has begun! Westwood three-putted the 9th after leaving his approach too far above the hole and misreading the downhill putt. Phil Mickelson enters the back nine with the solo lead. Tiger fatted his tee shot on #10, but still reached the green from 221. Freddy birdied #10 to reach -10. The hottest player on the course is Nick Watney, who has 7 birdies going into the final hole.
-12 Lee Westwood
-12 Phil Mickelson
-11 KJ Choi
-10 Fred Couples
-8 Tiger Woods
4:25pm: Westwood finds the fairway bunker on #8. Tiger makes birdie on #8 to go to -8. Choi birdies #8 to move to -11, tied with Phil and one behind Westwood. Mickelson is inside 3-4 feet for birdie. Couples birdies #9 to reach -10 with a 33 on the front.
3:57pm: Tiger Woods just holed out on #7 for eagle. He was so beaten down all he could do was smile and hold his arms in the air after the ball dropped. Fred Couples hit a 327 yard drive on #8 and has a green light special. Westwood pulled his drive on #7 and is in the trees.
3:48pm: Lee Westwood leads again as he birdied the tough par-4 5th hole. Tiger has made yet another one handed swing on #6. KJ Choi just made birdie on #6 (-10) and he’s going to be a big factor down the stretch. Ryan Moore aced the 16th hole, which Nathan Green aced earlier.
3:25pm: Tiger Woods bogeyed #4 and is now six shots off the lead. Tiger’s short chip shots are not stopping where he wants. They’re going long. His game doesn’t seem to be in control. I’m calling it now. Tiger has lost his mojo. KJ Choi is putting very well and is right in the mix at -9 with Fred Couples.
3:15pm: Fred Couples made a near impossible downhill birdie putt on #3. Freddie was two shots off the lead but Lee Westwood birdied #2 to reach -12. During Phil Mickelson’s backstroke on his birdie attempt on #2, a stamen from a tree fell perfectly in his line. His ball struck it and was knocked off line, making him miss the putt. Unbelievable.
2:57pm: Tiger Woods just dumped his bunker shot (3rd) back in the same bunker. He does make par but will certainly lose a stroke to most of the field on #2.
2:50pm: Tiger Woods has now hit two drives, both with one hand on the club. He hit #9 fairway with his tee shot on #1 en route to bogey. He does not look good. Leader Lee Westwood found trees on his first shot of the day, then hit the trees trying to go for the green. He’s going to make bogey. Phil Mickelson teed off #1 with a 3-wood, smartly. He should make par.
2:20pm: Sergio Garcia should take a break from golf and come back when he can enjoy it. He’s moping around the course, dragging his wrists on the ground, slumped shoulders. He just putted off the green into Rae’s Creek on #12. Just watching him makes me tired and depressed.