By mid-morning, Congressional had already begun to look like Congressional again, at least where the golf course was concerned. But the spectator areas, even after play began, were littered with stray limbs.
“Everything that was inside the ropes was thrown outside the ropes,” Russell said.
Still, organizers are prepared to welcome fans for Sunday’s final round. Gates are scheduled to open at 9 a.m., with play beginning — in threesomes, from both the first and 10th tees — at 11 a.m. Tickets from Saturday’s round will be honored Sunday; unused Saturday tickets will be eligible for a refund.
At least, then, there should be some normalcy. As Woods played a chip shot from behind the sixth green Saturday, a gallery of several dozen fans, volunteers and workers followed along. When the ball shot up from the rough, settled onto the green and then rolled in the cup, they burst into applause. But this was far from the kind of roar normally reserved for such moments, and Woods’s fist pump was no dramatic upper cut.
“I’m disappointed I didn’t get to hear that cheer,” said Bo Van Pelt, who played with Woods and is now tied with him.
Indeed, when Woods’s group played the ninth hole, the final threesome made its way up No. 7, which runs parallel. It included de Jonge and Hunter Mahan, both trying to fend off Woods. The number of fans following the leaders: zero.
“I told Tiger: That was a Bo Van Pelt crowd,” Van Pelt said jokingly.
And for those playing in front of, well, no one?
“You make a nice putt,” said Billy Hurley III, a pro from Annapolis, “and you’re like, ‘Okay, we’ll move on.’ ”
Furyk made one putt, and a friend of one of his playing partners, Hunter Haas, was the only one there to clap. Instinctively, Furyk waved in acknowledgment.
“And then I’m like, ‘What am I doing?’ ” he said.
What he was doing: competing in a tournament at golf’s highest level in circumstances like no one can remember.