AUGUSTA, Ga. — Bubba Watson has come to grips with the mortality of his Masters title defense.
“You can say it,” Watson said Saturday. “I’m out of it.”
A third-round 73 left Watson at 1-under-par 215 for 54 holes, 15 strokes back of leader Jordan Spieth, a co-runner up three strokes behind Watson last year.
“I’ve got two (green jackets), so I’ll be able to sleep OK tonight,” Watson said.
Watson’s troubles came quickly Saturday. He had a shot bury under the lip of the greenside bunker on the par-4 first hole, forcing him to chip backward into the bunker before getting on in four.
Then he three-putted.
“I missed the 6-footer,” said Watson, whose caddie is Lafayette native Ted Scott. “When you miss 6-footers around here, you’re not going to do so well.
“That’s what I’ve been doing all week. I haven’t made the putts I need to make.”
Watson tees off at 11:30 a.m. CDT on Sunday.
By twos, Reed recedes
Former University High golfer Patrick Reed opened with a 70 on Thursday, then was two strokes worse with a 72 on Friday.
He was two strokes worse still Saturday, posting only one birdie on the par-5 15th hole to wind up in a tie for 30th.
The former Augusta State standout missed the cut last year in his first Masters.
Reed tees off at 10:50 a.m. Sunday.
Purse reaches $10 million
The jacket isn’t the only green the Masters winner will get.
The tournament office released this year’s prize money figures Saturday afternoon, announcing a $10 million total purse with $1.8 million to the winner.
That’s a significant increase over last year when Watson won. He got $1.62 million out of an $8 million total purse.
Final-round TV coverage begins on CBS at 1 p.m.
Online coverage starts at 10 a.m. on Masters.com with Masters On The Range. That programming is also available on the CBS Sports Network.
2016 Drive, Chip & Putt
Registration is now open for the 2016 Drive, Chip & Putt Championship, a youth golf competition held at Augusta National Golf Club.
There will again be two local qualifiers in Louisiana:
-- The Island Country Club, Plaquemine, June 16
-- Oakwing Golf Club, Alexandria, June 30
A subregional (second round) qualifier will be held Aug. 4 at TPC Louisiana in Avondale. Winners there will head to a regional qualifier, Sept. 13 at the Golf Club of Houston in Humble, Texas.
The 2016 Drive, Chip & Putt Championship will be April 3 at Augusta National. The Masters runs April 7-10, 2016.
Ticket applications for the 2016 Drive, Chip & Putt Championship will be accepted soon.
For more information, visit DriveChipandPutt.com.
Sergio, Tiger make small talk
Sergio Garcia tweeted a fact everyone knew before he was paired with Tiger Woods on Saturday: The two aren’t, to say the least, best of friends.
But Garcia tried to defuse the notion that the two have a simmering feud after their round.
“A little bit here and there,” Garcia said of the in-round talk with Woods. “Mainly it was, obviously, saying, ‘good shot’ and ‘well done’ and ‘good putt’ and ‘good birdie’ and things like that. So, just the normal stuff.
“But it was very good. It was the way it should be.”
Woods shot a 68 to get into a tie for fifth at 6-under, while Garcia shot 73 to fall back into a tie for 18th at 3-under.
“I don’t usually enjoy my rounds a lot here on this golf course, because I don’t feel very comfortable on it,” Garcia said. “I didn’t play great, but at least I managed to shoot a decent score and I’m happy with that.”