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Is dramatic comeback in Tiger Woods' weekend plans at US Open?

Cam Inman, The Mercury News on

Published in Golf

PEBBLE BEACH, Calif. -- Tiger Woods made his move at the U.S. Open just as the weekend rounds were coming into sight.

Woods went the wrong way.

Finishing with back-to-back bogeys Friday left Woods "a little hot" and behind a lot of truer contenders. It wasn't enough to draw a concession speech, not when his even-par total safely kept him above the cutline.

"Right now I'm still in the ballgame," Woods said. "There's so many guys with a chance to win."

Scoring conditions have been ripe at Pebble Beach. The ground is not too firm. The weather is not too shabby thanks to a constant marine layer. The under-par red numbers on the leaderboard reflect that.

It also means Brooks Koepka's bid to win a third straight U.S. Open remains in play after shooting 2-under par each round thus far.

 

Justin Rose, Woods' playing partner along with Jordan Spieth, could not parlay his opening-round 65 into anything more than a second-round 70, which isn't all bad considering it's not far off Woods' 2000 romp here that started 65-69.

As historic as that 15-stroke win was by Woods in 2000, he needs as dramatic a comeback by sunset Sunday, and he expects tougher course conditions to weed out those merely posing as contenders, not a 15-time major champion.

"The golf course will be a little bit faster, a little bit more springy than today and scores will continue to back up a little bit," Woods said.

That could be just what Woods needs, according to Conrad Ray, Woods' teammate 25 years ago at Stanford who is fresh off coaching the Cardinal to its ninth NCAA championship.

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