I hit the ball well all day, and it was a day that I needed to. The wind was blowing out there, swirling in those trees, and it was just a tough day. —Tiger Wooods
DUBLIN, Ohio — That other Rory — Rory Sabbatini — played his best golf in the worst weather Friday at the Memorial and made a surprising appearance atop the leaderboard. Right behind him was a Tiger Woods that looked all too familiar.
Sabbatini played bogey-free over his final 12 holes, and despite missing a 5-foot birdie putt on the 18th hole, put together a 3-under 69 in the cool, blustery conditions at Muirfield Village to take a one-shot lead going into the weekend.
Woods looked strong for the second straight day, though he also had another double bogey that slowed his progress. What pleased him was controlling his ball in the wind for plenty of birdie chances that led to a 69.
"I hit the ball well all day, and it was a day that I needed to," Woods said. "The wind was blowing out there, swirling in those trees, and it was just a tough day."
It was plenty tough for Rory McIlroy.
The U.S. Open champion, who returned to No. 1 in the world only four weeks ago, missed the cut in his third straight tournament. McIlroy was in good shape until a shot just outside a creek hit the bank and went backward into the water, leading to the first of two double bogeys on the back nine. He shot 79 and missed the cut by three shots.
Spencer Levin (72) and Scott Stallings (73) played in the morning and joined Woods at 5-under 139.
Jim Furyk, another former champion, matched the best score Friday with a 68 and was in the group only two shots behind.
LPGA TOUR: At Galloway Township, N.J., Stacy Lewis and Mika Miyazato are tied for the lead after the opening round. Paula Creamer and Mariajo Uribe are tied for third at 4 under. Maude-Aimee Leblanc is at 3 under, while seven players are another shot back, including Lexi Thompson and Christina Kim.
CHAMPIONS TOUR: At West Des Moines, Iowa, Mike Goodes shot a 7-under 64 to take a two-shot lead after the first round of the Principal Charity Classic on Friday. Goodes opened the event with four straight birdies and closed with birdies on the 17th and 18th holes.