JERSEY CITY, N.J. -- Starting his third round five shots off the lead at the Barclays, Tiger Woods could not gain much ground on the leaders after a 2-under 69 on Saturday afternoon at the Liberty National Golf Club.
The 37-year-old, 79-time tour winner birdied his first hole. Then he had three bogeys and another birdie on his front nine to make the turn at 1 over for the day and five under for the tournament. Then on the back nine, he birdied three of his last six holes to end a day that he started at 7:43 a.m. ET to finish his second round. He is 8-under par for the tournament.
"I hung in there," Woods said Saturday afternoon. "It's golf. You just kind of grind it out. It's a long day.
"You just figure out something to get it around, and I did. I figured out some shots that I knew I could play today, and just relied on my putter."
Woods said that he was not surprised By Kevin Chappell's 62 on Saturday.
"The greens are perfect," he said. "The fairways are fast and you can get the ball way down there; if you're feeling pretty good and risky, you can drive it all the way down there where you have a lot of wedges in there."
After setting the course record with that bogey-free 62, Chappell is one shot back of the leaders with an 11 under total.
For the third consecutive day, Woods admitted he was dealing with a sore back.
"It starts off great every day and then it progressively deteriorates as the day goes on," Woods said of his back. "Hopefully, tomorrow, it will be one of those days again and fight through it and see if I can win the tournament."
In 2013, Woods has had at least a share of the lead heading into the final round of all five of his wins. In four of those wins, he held the outright lead going into the final day.
His victory at the 2012 AT&T National marked the last time he won an event where he didn't have at least a share of the 54-hole lead. That week, he had started his final round one shot off the lead and had a 2-under 69 to beat Bo Van Pelt by two shots.