PITTSFORD, N.Y. It was supposed to be a week for the ages at the PGA Championship with Tiger Woods and Phil Mickelson dueling to win the Wanamaker Trophy in their first showdown as the world's No. 1 and No. 2 players in a few years.
Instead, the two superstars have been relegated to also-ran status at Oak Hill Country Club midway through the year's final major.
Woods struggled with his putting all day Friday, posting four birdies and four bogeys in a round of 70 that left him at 1-over-par 141 and 10 shots off the lead held by Jason Dufner. Mickelson missed some makeable birdie putts and shot his second straight 71 for a 142 total.
Woods, whose victory at last week's WGC-Bridgestone Invitational was his fifth of the year, thought the golf course was "definitely gettable" after rain on Thursday night and Friday morning. But he couldn't make it happen.
Two particularly galling holes for Woods came at 14, where he drove the green at the short par 4 but three-putted, and at 16, where he took three putts again, this time for a bogey.
"I made my share and missed my share just the way it goes," he said. "Obviously, I need to hit the ball better than I have."
It has been the same story for Mickelson, who carded only one birdie. He got up and down for par from the rough off the green at the 18th to finish 2 over, which was the estimated cut when he finished. That number rose to 3 over by the end of the day.
"It's just a little bit off," Mickelson said. "I feel like I can turn it around in a second. I struggled on the greens. I was over-reading almost every putt. I really struggled fading the ball."
Instead of Woods vs. Mickelson, the duel Friday came from Mickelson's group, the one that included the major champions from 2013. Masters winner Adam Scott and Justin Rose, who prevailed at the U.S. Open at Merion Golf Club, exhibited the confidence generated by their performances in the heat of golf's most prestigious tournaments.
Scott, who shared the lead after the first round, shot a 68 for a 133 and a tie for second place. Rose was 2 over for his round at the turn but sank six birdie putts on his second nine the front side of Oak Hill for a 29 and a score of 66 that left him at 134.
"It's wonderful to be in this situation right now," Rose said, "talking about having done it, talking about feeling like you can win more, believing in yourself, not talking about how I hope it could happen this week. So I think that alone makes it easier."
Scott said he plans to push to win more majors, not just be satisfied with what he did at the Masters.
"I think the platform has never been better for me to go on and win multiple majors," he said. "I guess you've got to take the confidence and form of winning a major and run with it."
McIlroy rallies Rory McIlroy already was 5 over for his round and appeared headed to another short week in a major. He finished with four birdies on the last eight holes, including a 40-foot putt from off the green, and achieved a first in his PGA Tour career.
He made his first cut at a tournament when he was the defending champion. The sample size is small this was only his fourth time as defending champ but the 24-year-old from Northern Ireland was no less pleased. Considering the way his season has gone, he'll take even the most modest of victories.
"I'm obviously standing up pretty happy about the day," McIlroy said after rallying for a 71 to stand at par 140. "Had a nice finish to the round. I was letting the round get away from me somewhat, but making four birdies on the last eight holes was nice to redeem the round a little bit and keep myself in the tournament."
McIlroy previously missed the cut when defending at Quail Hollow in 2011, the U.S. Open in 2012 and the Honda Classic this year when he withdrew in the middle of the second round.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.