Tiger Woods, finding that 'nothing seemed to work,' struggles his way to 78 on Masters moving day

Tiger shoots his highest round ever at the Masters with a 78 (1:53)

Tiger Woods struggles in Round 3, especially with his putter, as he shoots his highest-ever round at Augusta with a 78. (1:53)

AUGUSTA, Ga. -- Five-time Masters champion Tiger Woods didn't make much of a move on moving day, at least in the right direction, at the 86th Masters on Saturday.

Woods, who entered the third round 9 shots behind leader Scottie Scheffler and 4 strokes out of second place, couldn't get much momentum going in cold and windy conditions and finished 6-over 78. He finished the round with bogeys on Nos. 16 and 17 and a double-bogey on 18.

It was Woods' worst score in 93 career rounds at Augusta National; his previous worst was a 5-over 77 in the third round in 1995, his debut at the Masters as an amateur.

While Woods, 46, seemed to have more speed and power with his driver on Saturday, he had four three-putts and a rare four-putt. He hit 11 of 14 fairways and 11 of 18 greens, his highest totals in both in his first three rounds.

"I mean, it's just like I hit a thousand putts out there on the greens today," Woods said. "Obviously, it's affected the score. You take those away and I have normal two putts, I made even par for the day. I did what I needed to do ball striking-wise, but I did absolutely the exact opposite on the greens."

Woods needed 36 putts, which was his most in a round here since he also had 36 in the third round in 1999. According to the PGA Tour, it was the first time in Woods' career that he had five holes with three putts or more in a round.

"I just could not get a feel for getting comfortable with the ball," Woods said. "Posture, feel, my right hand, my release, I just couldn't find it. Trying different things, trying to find it, trying to get something, taking practice strokes and just trying to feel the swing and the putter head, trying to get anything, and nothing seemed to work."

Woods, who is 7 over after 54 holes, said the colder temperatures on Saturday affected his back. About two months before his car wreck, he had a procedure to relieve nerve pain in his lower back. He had spinal fusion surgery, a more invasive procedure, in April 2017.

"It's not as limber and as loose as it normally is, that's for sure," Woods said.

Kevin Kisner, who played with Woods on Saturday for the first time in their PGA Tour careers, said it was difficult for him to move and hitting the ball "felt like concrete."

"I didn't ask him much about his leg," Kisner said. "We were trying to keep it pretty light out there. I'm sure his leg is hurting. I mean, I'm hurting and I'm healthy, so I hope he can get back out here and play a couple more events with us here soon."

Woods' unexpected start in the Masters is his first in 17 months, after he was seriously injured in a car wreck outside Los Angeles on Feb. 23, 2021. He has made the cut in each of his past 22 starts at the Masters, the third-longest streak by any player in the tournament's history.

Woods started his round with a three-putt bogey on No. 1, the second straight round in which he bogeyed the first. He rebounded with a birdie on the par-5 second. His chip out of a greenside bunker nearly went in the hole for an eagle, and he then made a 4-footer for birdie.

After carding pars on Nos. 3 and 4, things fell apart quickly on the par-4 fifth. After hitting a 304-yard drive down the middle, Woods was left with 202 yards to the hole. As soon as Woods hit his approach shot, he grimaced and yelled, "Damn it!" His ball was short and way right of the green, leaving him 65 feet to the hole.

Woods knocked his long putt above the hole and was left with a tricky, downhill putt. He missed the 6-footer and then inexplicably rushed the 4-foot comeback attempt and it lipped out. The double-bogey 6 dropped him to 3 over for the tournament.

It was just the second four-putt for Woods as a pro at the Masters; his only other one was on the 13th hole in the opening round in 2005. His last four-putt in a major came at the 2018 U.S. Open.

Woods plans to be back on the course on Sunday, even with a sixth green jacket well out of his reach.

"Never give up. Always chase after your dreams," Woods said. "I fight each and every day. Each and every day is a challenge. Each and every day presents its own different challenges for all of us. I wake up and start the fight all over again."