Patrick Reed dismisses notion that he has home course advantage

Patrick Reed

The 14-time major champion and world number 103 fired a second-round 75, three-over par, in Friday's second round to stand on four-over 148 after 36 holes at Augusta National.

The needling was no surprise given their history - specifically Reed's 1 up victory, secured with a birdie at 18, which set the tone for the US Ryder Cup victory over Europe.

He was at 14-under 202.

A year ago without any pressure, Reed shot 76 in the final round, while McIlroy produced a 69 to earn a tie for seventh. "I'm hoping to come in and spoil the party". It was just a few days too late to be more than an afterthought at golf's first major. "But at the same time, he's trying to go for the career grand slam".

"I've had some success in this comeback and I'm getting there", Woods said.

"There's a lot more players in this golf tournament than just Patrick Reed and I", McIlroy said.

Spain's Jon Rahm briefly threatened on the back nine, but finished four shots behind in fourth.

Reed was commanding earlier in the week, with sub-70 scores in each of the first three rounds. "It was probably also one of the most exhausting matches we ever played", Reed said.

Reed had just eagled the 13th to take a 3-shot lead when Rahm was discussing his own round. He second one was even better.

Sergio Garcia, last year's victor, followed his opening 81 - which was defined by an insane 13 at the par-5 15th - with a 78. He chipped onto the green and watched it roll right into the cup. There were triumphant fist pumps with each of them.

"I believe that's how it's going to be ..."

Mickelson did pull off one spectacular shot, lashing a driver from off the deck at the par-5 8 and converting a 9-foot putt for eagle. He posted red numbers on Nos. He also shot 67 with three bogeys, including a 3-putt on 16, and leads the field in strokes gained, putting.

It's the fifth time in 46 holes that Reed strung together back-to-back-to-back birds.

Phil Mickelson, meanwhile, matched his highest-ever score at the Masters with a 79.

Spieth's tee shot came up short, landed on a downslope and hopped into Rae's Creek.

Rory McIlroy reacts after his eagle on the eighth hole during the third round at the Masters.

The Masters leader doesn't care that you don't like him. He made contact the second time, missed the green and eventually suffered a triple-bogey 7 en route to shooting 2-over 74 to be at 7 over.

There's a new name near the top of the leaderboard at the Masters. He made a birdie there, with his splash out of the front bunker, and another at the 8th, with a pin-point pitch in. The shot would have rolled well past the hole, but it hit the stick and dropped in for a 3.

Henley seemed buoyed at the start of the day, converting birdies at Nos.

There was a crackle in the air during the Masters' third round but, thick and close as the clouds were, the energy had nothing to do with the forecast storms.

Spieth had rallied from nine shots behind at the start of the day to claim a share of the lead with his ninth birdie of the day on the 16th, setting up the chance to equal the course record of 63 or even match the major championship mark of 62. Rory McIlroy brought the course, and the crowd, alive with some daydream golf, the kind of stuff the rest of us play when we close our eyes and drift away. I feel like I'm driving it better than I have all year, but I'm not capitalizing on it. ... He continued to struggle with iron play, failing to get a grip on distance control.

The 42-year-old Woods is playing the Masters for the first time since 2015. He ended the day making the cut on the number. "That will be the goal and hopefully I can get it done". "I was pleased with the way I was able to drive it, but I just could not convert with my irons".

Matthew Fitzpatrick made a huge move on "Moving Day" at the Masters.

Needing a two-putt par from 25 feet at 18 to win, Reed gently tapped the first putt and saw it race four feet past the cup. He's surely to make one of the biggest jumps - maybe even the biggest - heading into the final round. Reed casually made par on the 72nd hole to end any speculation he was going to win.

"Obviously it's been everyone's dream to win the Masters", Fowler said.

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