Jordan Spieth broke another record at The Masters Saturday, and is in position to take down the tournament’s biggest mark. He might have to do so in order to win his first green jacket.
Spieth, despite a late double bogey, finished the round at 16-under, a record for 54 holes at Augusta, and just two strokes shy of Tiger Woods’ record-setting mark of 18-under set in 1997.
He needed every stroke of it to maintain his cushion atop the leader board as 2013 winner Justin Rose shot a 5-under 67 to reach 12-under and three-time champion Phil Mickelson did the same to make it to 11-under.
Charley Hoffman, who was in second place after the first two rounds, is within six strokes at 10-under. The next group of players, which includes No. 1 Rory McIlroy and four-time Masters winner Tiger Woods, is a distant 10 strokes back at 6-under.
Spieth showed the first signs of wear and tear on his front nine on Saturday as news that McIlroy, Woods, and Mickelson were all off to red-hot starts reached him. He hit two bogeys in his first seven holes, but recovered with birdies on 9, 12, 13, 15 and 16 before his double bogey on 17.
Rose didn’t look like a contender through his first six holes, struggling at 2-over. But he caught fire from there, with seven birdies from there on. Mickelson was 4-under at the turn, but cooled off with bogeys on 11 and 17. He mixed in another three birdies however to balance out his best round of the year.
Woods shot a 68, giving him his best round at a Major since 2011.