PALM BEACH GARDENS, Fla. – Rory McIlroy left before his round was even over. Tiger Woods had to rally just to stick around.
And with all that drama Friday in the Honda Classic, hardly anyone noticed that Luke Guthrie showed off his potential in a big way with a 7-under 63 to take a one-shot lead going into the weekend at PGA National.
Guthrie, pegged by many of his peers as a rookie worth watching going into the year, played bogey-free on another cool, cloudy day.
Of his seven birdies, perhaps the most impressive for the Big Ten champion from Illinois came on the sixth hole when he had mud on the side of his ball and was able to work the shot in from the right to about 10 feet.
After finishing his round, he walked into an interview room when someone mentioned that McIlroy walked off the course after being 7-over par through eight holes.
I had no clue, Guthrie said. I was just kind of going about my business out there.
He was at 9-under 131 and had a one-shot lead over Michael Thompson.
McIlroy, who missed the cut in Abu Dhabi and lost in the first round of the Match Play Championship in his previous two starts, made a double bogey on his second hole and rinsed two balls in the water on the 16th hole on his way to a triple bogey.
He hit his approach to the 18th in the water and never finished the hole.
He shook hands with Ernie Els and Mark Wilson and was on his way, but not before conflicting messages.
McIlroy told three reporters who followed him to his car that it was nothing physical but that he was not in a good place mentally.
An hour later, he released a statement through his management company that he couldn’t concentrate because of a sore wisdom tooth.
Woods looked as if he might join him. A double bogey on the 13th hole put Woods one shot under the cut line with five holes to play.
Woods answered with a shot into 5 feet for birdie, a 6-foot par putt on the 16th hole, a par save from the back bunker on the 17th that was easier than it looked, and a par save from near the grandstand by the 18th green that was harder than it looked.
He wound up with another 70 to make the cut on the number, nine shots out of the lead.
I didn’t quite have my game like I did yesterday, Woods said. I hit it much better yesterday, but I putted better today, so it all evened out.
First-round leader Camilo Villegas shot a 77 and missed the cut.
LPGA: In Singapore, Stacy Lewis made six birdies to shoot a 6-under 66 and take a two-stroke lead after the second round of the HSBC Women’s Champions. The reigning LPGA Player of the Year was at 11-under 133 overall.
She led a pack of six players at 9-under: Ariya Jutanugarn (66), Na Yeon Choi (66), Chella Choi (67), Paula Creamer (67), Sun Young Yoon (68) and overnight leader Azahara Munoz (70).
Top-ranked Yani Tseng stumbled with a double bogey on the par-5 4th hole and shot a 73. She was in a tie for 21st place at 3 under.
EUROPEAN: In Centurion, South Africa, Charl Coetzee of South Africa shot a 7-under 65 to hold the clubhouse lead by a stroke when a thunderstorm halted the second round of the Tshwane Open.
Coetzee was at 12-under 132 on the Els Club course at Copperleaf Golf Estate.
Mark Tullo of Chile shot a 66, and Dawie Van Der Walt of South Africa was also at 11 under after 14 holes in the co-sanctioned European and Sunshine Tour event. Fifty-four of 156 players were unable to complete their round.