How it Happened: Tiger claims WGC-Bridgestone

Tiger Woods hits off the second tee during the final round of the WGC-Bridgestone Invitational at Firestone Country Club.

Tiger Woods hits off the second tee during the final round of the WGC-Bridgestone Invitational at Firestone Country Club.

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Hilton Head, SC - Harbour Town Golf Links

6:36:01 PM ET. 04/16/2014




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Tiger Woods protected his commanding lead Saturday, a sometimes-erratic third-round 68 paling in comparison to his 61 a day earlier – and again Sunday, much the same form is keeping him in control as he cruised to victory at the WGC-Bridgestone Invitational.

"It was one of those weeks where, I struggled yesterday in the middle part of the round. Today I was conservative, just trying to make pars. I figured the highest score I could shoot was going to be 70 today," he told CBS. "I just felt that this was a good day to protect.

"I feel like my game is pretty consistent . . . I've hit it pretty good most of the year, and weeks I've putted well I've been able to win."

Henrik Stenson began Sunday in second place, seven shots back at 8 under, and finished there in a tie with Keegan Bradley . Jason Dufner moved into third place at 7 under Saturday, sparked by four straight birdies to start his day. Luke Donald, Bill Haas and Chris Wood start the day T-4 another shot back. Much of that crowd remains in the battle for second.

• See tee times and groupings for the first two rounds of next week's PGA Championship.

We'll follow all the action Sunday in Akron, Ohio, as Woods works toward his eighth Bridgestone title – and scroll down for our previous coverage.

• • •

Hole No. 18: Par 4, 464 yards

Off the tee: With his last pass during an inconsistent day off the tee, Tiger Woods takes a big swing and hits it into the right rough.

On the approach: Some tree limbs overhang the line to the green, yet Tiger finds the back left of the green and will have a chance to end this with a birdie.

On the green: Tiger needs two putts once more, but par is more than good enough for the win.

Tiger for the day: Even par, winner by seven.

Elsewhere on the course: Miguel Angel Jimenez pars his last five holes for a 69 to finish at 6 under, T-4 as he heads to the clubhouse. Jason Dufner nearly birdies the last – it's hard to miss a putt by any less than this one – and settles for par to cap a 71 that puts him T-4 at 6 under. Henrik Stenson wraps up T-2 honors with a par for a 70.

• • •

Hole No. 17: Par 4, 400 yards

Off the tee: An easy swing with an iron puts Tiger Woods' ball on the right side of the fairway.

From the fairway: Hitting it nice and high, Tiger again puts it just past the hole and about 10 feet from the pin, maybe less.

On the green: Tiger misreads it, but close enough for a quick tap-in for par.

Tiger for the day: Even par; leading by seven.

Elsewhere on the course: Jason Dufner bogeys No. 16 to drop to 6 under and follows with a par at No. 17. Henrik Stenson birdies No. 17 to join Keegan Bradley in a tie for second at 8 under.

• • •

Hole No. 16: Par 5, 667 yards

Off the tee: Yet to birdie here, Tiger drives it down the left side and finds the left edge of the fairway.

From the fairway: Laying up on his second shot, Tiger then finds the green but will face a somewhat lengthy, yet makeable, birdie try.

On the green: Tiger doesn't miss by much, but rolls it about 2-3 feet past and is true with the comebacker for par.

Tiger for the day: Even par; leading by seven.

Elsewhere on the course: Zach Johnson finishes birdie-birdie-par for a 67 to get to T-5 at 6 under. Keegan Bradley birdies the last to get to the clubhouse alone in second at 8 under.

• • •

Hole No. 15: Par 3, 225 yards

Off the tee: Back on the greens-in-regulation train, Tiger Woods finds the middle and within makeable birdie range.

On the green: A bit left and a bit long, Tiger's birdie try runs past the hole; he marks and makes his par.

Tiger for the day: Even par; leading by seven.

Elsewhere on the course: Keegan Bradley birdies No. 17 to climb to 8 under, narrowing Woods' lead somewhat. Martin Kaymer birdies the 18th to add his name to the list of 66 shooters Sunday, climbing into the top 10 as well at 4 under and T-8.

• • •

Hole No. 14: Par 4, 467 yards

Off the tee: Avoiding trouble but missing the fairway a bit wide right, Tiger Woods hits it into the rough.

On the approach: From just off the fairway, Tiger has no trouble finding the green; he isn't happy, however, with the long putt he has left himself.

On the green: Tiger's first putt runs well past and he misses his comebacker, carding his first three-putt and first bogey of the day.

Tiger for the day: Even par; leading by eight.

Elsewhere on the course: Jason Dufner bogeys No. 14 to fall back to 7 under, T-2 with Keegan Bradley and Henrik Stenson.

• • •

Hole No. 13: Par 4, 471 yards

Off the tee: Another fairway hit for Tiger Woods, as he can cruise in at this point (as if he couldn't earlier, or perhaps even yesterday).

From the fairway: From the right edge of the fairway, Tiger again puts it long but absolutely right on line; the ball rolls to the back collar again, but without trouble on the horizon.

On the green: Another textbook up-and-down for Tiger as he makes par yet again.

Tiger for the day: 1 under; leading by nine.

Elsewhere on the course: Jason Dufner birdies No. 13 to climb to 8 under, cutting into Woods' lead just a bit.

• • •

Hole No. 12: Par 3, 180 yards

Off the tee: Again knocking it over the top of the flagstick, Tiger Woods gets the ball to stop less than 10 feet behind the hole.

On the green: Aiming for a 10-shot lead, Tiger lines up about a 7-footer here and rolls it just past the right edge, settling for another par tap-in.

Tiger for the day: 1 under; leading by nine.

Elsewhere on the course: With a nifty recovery shot, British Open champion Phil Mickelson gives himself a birdie look at the 18th to try to end the week at even par; he lips out and a birdie-bogey-par closing stretch sends him to the clubhouse at 1 over, T-22.

• • •

Hole No. 11: Par 4, 418 yards

Off the tee: Missing left, Tiger Woods hits it in the rough, as his game off the tee continues to be erratic.

On the approach: With a clean line to the green, Tiger finds the back-right collar for his first green missed since the day's first hole, yet birdie is still within reach.

On the green: Using the toe of his putter, Tiger gets it to about 3 feet and rolls in his par putt.

Tiger for the day: 1 under; leading by nine.

Elsewhere on the course: Reigning British Open champion Phil Mickelson birdies No. 16 to get back to T-20 at even par for the tournament, with two birdies and two bogeys today.

• • •

Hole No. 10: Par 4, 410 yards

Off the tee: Tiger Woods has birdied this hole every time this week, and he finds the left-center of the fairway for a chance to do so again.

From the fairway: Perhaps his closest approach yet, Tiger sticks it to inside 10 feet and should have a makeable birdie try here.

On the green: Call it 7 feet, as Tiger has the line and the speed and finds the side door for his first birdie since No. 17 on Saturday.

Tiger for the day: 1 under; leading by nine.

Elsewhere on the course: Keegan Bradley bogeys No. 12 to create a five-way tie for second at 7 under. Rory McIlroy birdies his second in a row and rises to 1 over for the week with one hole to play.

• • •

Hole No. 9: Par 4, 494 yards

Off the tee: Lashing at the ball, Tiger Woods crushes his tee shot and will have a short approach.

From the fairway: Well left of the hole location, Tiger's got another green in regulation and is pin-high again but facing a long birdie try.

On the green: Perhaps his best putt of the day, Tiger judges the speed perfectly and has a tap-in the length of some putter heads for his ninth par in as many holes today.

Tiger for the day: Even par; leading by seven.

Elsewhere on the course: Reigning U.S. Open champion Justin Rose birdies No. 16 to rise to T-17 at 1 under; it's his second birdie of the round against a bogey.

• • •

Hole No. 8: Par 4, 482 yards

Off the tee: Missing another fairway, Tiger Woods hits it into the right rough near a photographer.

On the approach: Looking to reach his seventh straight green in regulation, Tiger has a good lie; he lands it pin high, gets it to check and is on the putting surface again.

On the green: About 30 feet out, Tiger hits it just as close as he has from 7 or 10 feet. Easy tap-in for par again.

Tiger for the day: Even par; leading by seven.

Elsewhere on the course: Keegan Bradley birdies No. 9 to climb to T-2 alongside Luke Donald at 8 under. Donald narrowly misses a long birdie putt at No. 8. Further back in the pack, Rory McIlroy birdies No. 16 to improve to 2 over for the day, a double bogey at No. 13 the difference as he has two bogeys and two birdies; he stands T-26 at 2 over for the week.

• • •

Hole No. 7: Par 3, 202 yards

Off the tee: Green again: Tiger Woods finds the middle, pin high, another 20-footer or so for birdie.

On the green: Missing a bit left, Tiger two-putts for par again. We should all be so lucky.

Tiger for the day: Even par; leading by seven.

Elsewhere on the course: Webb Simpson closes his round out with a birdie for the day's third 66 along with Russell Henley and Billy Horschel; Simpson heads to the clubhouse at T-12.

• • •

Hole No. 6: Par 4, 469 yards

Off the tee: Another fairway for Tiger Woods, this one coming to rest on the right edge.

From the fairway: Gauging the distance nearly perfectly, Tiger hits it to about 10-12 feet right of the pin for yet another green in regulation.

On the green: The speed is good, but the line is just off and the ball rolls by on the high side. Another tap-in. Another par.

Tiger for the day: Even par; leading by seven.

Elsewhere on the course: Zach Johnson birdies Nos. 7-8 to get to 2 under for his round, T-8 at 5 under for the week.

• • •

Hole No. 5: Par 3, 192 yards

Off the tee: Nearly straight over the flagstick, Tiger Woods finds the back of the green and again faces a downhill birdie attempt.

On the green: Getting this one to the hole, Tiger's birdie try this time slides by just a bit on the low side and he taps in again.

Tiger for the day: Even par; leading by seven.

Elsewhere on the course: Four golfers are T-3 at 7 under: Keegan Bradley, Jason Dufner, Miguel Angel Jimenez and Henrik Stenson.

• • •

Hole No. 4: Par 4, 471 yards

Off the tee: The ball lands in the fairway but bounces left into the rough, sitting up for a decent shot.

On the approach: Tiger picks it cleanly and finds the middle of the green, again giving himself a chance at birdie.

On the green: Short again, Tiger rolls it within a foot of the cup and taps in for his fourth straight par.

Tiger for the day: Even par; leading by seven.

Elsewhere on the course: Bogeys by Jason Dufner at No. 4 and Henrik Stenson at No. 3 leave Luke Donald alone in second at 8 under.

• • •

Hole No. 3: Par 4, 442 yards

Off the tee: Splitting the middle, Tiger Woods finds the fairway for the second time today.

From the fairway: Tiger finds the middle of the green, clearing the water-guarded front but leaving a downhill putt for birdie.

On the green: From about 20 feet, Tiger is a bit timid with this one and leaves it short and left; he rolls that one in for another par.

Tiger for the day: Even par; leading by seven.

Elsewhere on the course: Luke Donald moves to T-2 at 8 under with back-to-back birdies at Nos. 2-3.

• • •

Hole No. 2: Par 5, 526 yards

Off the tee: Having hit for the cycle here so far (an eagle, a birdie and a par), Tiger Woods misses the fairway to the right.

On the approach: After playing competitor Henrik Stenson finds the collar of the green in two, Tiger is forced to lay up from the fairway bunker and leave himself a short iron or wedge into a well-bunkered green. Tiger sticks his third shot inside 10 feet, closer to 5, for a birdie attempt.

On the green: Tiger's birdie try slides by, curling just a bit on the left edge and running past. He taps in for par. Stenson also makes par.

Tiger for the day: Even par; leading by seven.

Elsewhere on the course: Jason Dufner misses a birdie attempt of about 7 feet at No. 2 and taps in for par to remain 8 under.

• • •

Hole No. 1: Par 4, 399 yards

Off the tee: Tiger Woods finds the left side of the fairway to start his day at Firestone.

From the fairway: Tiger comes up short of the green, his ball coming to rest in the rough between the collar and the front-left bunker. He'll have plenty of green to work with; the pin's in the back.

Around the green: Gauging the rough well, Tiger hits it to inside 5 feet, just right of and past the pin. He is dead-center with his par putt.

Tiger for the day: Even par; leading by seven.

Elsewhere on the course: Jason Dufner opens with birdie, while Henrik Stenson makes a short par putt as the two are tied for second at 8 under. Keegan Bradley and Miguel Angel Jimenez birdie No. 2 – as many have today – to rise to T-4 at 6 under with Luke Donald, Bill Haas and Chris Wood.

• • •

Update No. 13: 2:02 p.m.

Webb Simpson birdies for the third time in four holes, at No. 13, rising to T-12 at 3 under on the strength of a five-under round.

• • •

Update No. 12: 1:56 p.m.

Steve Stricker birdies Nos. 2-3 to climb to T-9 at 4 under alongside Zach Johnson and Adam Scott, who birdies the second hole.

• • •

Update No. 11: 1:41 p.m.

John Merrick moves into the top 10 with a birdie-birdie start to his round – rising to 4 under and T-9 alongside Zach Johnson, who birdied the first.

• • •

Update No. 10: 1:37 p.m.

Back-to-back birdies start Webb Simpson's back nine and get him to 4 under for the round, T-14 at 2 under.

• • •

Update No. 9: 1:31 p.m.

With about 40 minutes until Tiger Woods' tee time, he predictably has not been threatened by anyone going low early – but some good golf is being played in a strong field.

Billy Horschel set the tone with an early 66, and three golfers are just a shot off that pace at 3 under on the back nine:

  • Boo Weekley was 5 under through seven holes, but has bogeyed twice since and has six holes to play.
  • Dustin Johnson birdied three of four on Nos. 11-14 and has one hole left to play.
  • Russell Henley has scattered four birdies and a bogey, with two to play.
  • Webb Simpson has two birdies, an eagle and a bogey through 10 holes.
  • Bo Van Pelt has four birdies and a bogey through 10 holes.

• • •

Update No. 8: 12:56 p.m.

Russell Henley is 4 under today, scattering four birdies among 14 bogey-free holes to climb to T-32 at 2 over.

• • •

Update No. 7: 12:38 p.m.

Harris English and Jamie Donaldson open birdie-birdie to rise to T-11 at 2 under.

Billy Horschel birdies the 17th and finishes with a par for a 4-under 66 that pushes him to T-48 at 6 over.

A quick note on the sponsorship future of this tournament, from Bridgestone's Twitter account, @Bridgestone: "Just announced we've extended our title sponsorship of the World Golf Championships - @Bridgestone Invitational through 2018 #wgc #akron"

• • •

Update No. 6: 12:28 p.m.

Webb Simpson is 3 under today, with an eagle at the second and a birdie at the fifth to climb to T-18 at 1 under. Simpson opened the tournament with a 64 but faded with rounds of 75 and 73.

• • •

Update No. 5: 12:17 p.m.

Two more birdies – that's five in his last six holes – get Boo Weekley to 2 under and T-11. Weekley is bogey-free through seven today.

• • •

Update No. 4: 11:51 a.m.

Boo Weekley has birdied three of his last four holes, rising to even par and T-17; he and Billy Horschel have the day's low rounds going at 3 under.

• • •

Update No. 3: 11:43 a.m.

Graeme McDowell opens with back-to-back birdies and follows with a par to move to 1 over. McDowell has carded 71 every day this week.

• • •

Update No. 2: 11:24 a.m.

Billy Horschel is 3 under today, scattering four birdies and a bogey to get to 7 over for the tournament. He's got the low round of the day going so far, with several golfers 2 under today.

• • •

Update No. 1: 11:03 a.m.

Sergio Garcia adds a birdie at No. 6 to his eagle earlier, then bogeys the next to remain 5 over. Nicolas Colsaerts has birdied three of his last four to move to 3 over.

• • •

Early risers

Sergio Garcia starts par-eagle to rise to 5 over – and another eagle at No. 2 has Kevin Streelman 2 under through eight holes, 8 over for the week. Jason Day and Ken Duke birdied No. 2 to move to 1 under for the day, 7 over for the week.

• • •

Slow starters

Daniel Popovic and Jacob Van Zyl are 4 over through eight and 11 holes respectively and are at the bottom of the leaderboard at 26 and 27 over.

• • •

Weather conditions

There's very little chance of rain at Firestone (wait, did we say that out loud?), with morning temperatures about 70, light to moderate winds according to accuweather.com, and highs in the mid 70s.

• • •

Saturday coverage

5 Things: Woods all but done at WGC-Bridgestone; bunker lurks; more

On a day when Tiger Woods sprayed just enough loose shots to show off his all-world short game during a 2-under 68 effort that pushed him to 15-under, here are 5 Things to Know from Firestone CC.

How it Happened: Tiger still commands WGC-Bridgestone

Tiger Woods' 2-under 68 never quite garnered a 59 alert as he did Friday, but it kept him in control as he chases his eighth WGC-Bridgestone Invitational victory. Henrik Stenson moved into second, with Jason Dufner third after 54 holes.

• • •

Friday coverage

McCabe: Woods at his vintage best Friday at Firestone

Tiger Woods was at his vintage best Friday – a stern-faced, steel-eyed, laser-shooting, flawless-putting machine who appeared to be on a mission. That mission ended in a second-round 61 and a seven-shot lead at the WGC-Bridgestone Invitational.

5 Things: Wood welcomes daunting task of chasing Tiger

On a day when the second round of the WGC-Bridgestone Invitational produced one number that mattered above all, 61 – as in the score that put this tournament firmly in Tiger Woods’ grasp – let us focus on another number. Five. As in 5 Things of note from Friday at Firestone Country Club.

How it happened: Tiger flirts with 59, fires 61 at Firestone

Tiger Woods flirted with 59 during the second round of the WGC-Bridgestone Invitational before tying his course record with a 9-under 61 at Firestone Country Club in Akron, Ohio.

• • •

Thursday coverage

5 Things: Letdown for Lefty, Sneds at Bridgestone

While Phil Mickelson and Brandt Snedeker struggled after recent victories, and Rory McIlroy played to level par, Webb Simpson made eight birdies in his Bridgestone debut to take the first-round lead at Firestone.

After rough patch, Stenson finds sweet redemption

After a few years of turbulence, Henrik Stenson is letting the good times roll.

How it happened: Woods three off Simpson's lead at Firestone

Tiger Woods opened the WGC-Bridgestone Invitational with a 4-under 66 Thursday at Firestone Country Club in Akron, Ohio. But it was Webb Simpson who grabbed hold of the first-round lead following a 6-under 64.

Distance control fuels Woods to opening-round 66 at Bridgestone

Tiger Woods opened the WGC-Bridgestone Invitational with a 4-under 66 Thursday.

• • •

Pre-tournament coverage

Hate to be Rude: McIlroy turns to friends for answers

Ben Hogan used to say that the driver, not the putter, is the most important club in the bag because it sets everything up. Decades later, the Hawk apparently gets no argument from slumping Rory McIlroy.

Woods 'very comfortable' at Firestone

Tiger Woods has won seven times on Tour at Firestone Country Club. So it's no wonder the annual stop in Akron, Ohio, is one Woods looks forward to.

Snedeker continues busy stretch at Firestone

Brandt Snedeker will have a busy schedule between now and the end of the FedEx Cup playoffs. He'll look to capture his first major championship and defend his FedEx Cup crown during that stretch, too.

Fantasy Tip Sheet: WGC-Bridgestone Invitational

As a seven-time champ at the WGC-Bridgestone, Tiger Wood is a no-brainer pick this week. But a couple of our panelists are also tossing out some love for Adam Scott and Steve Stricker.

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