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Adam Scott hits his approach on No. 15, which would lead to a birdie on Friday.

Photo by: Chris Trotman/Augusta National

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After he began the second nine Friday at the Masters, the wind came up, but Adam Scott’s score started getting lower.

Just the way he would have planned it.

Scott was 3-over for the second round, but he made the most of increasingly difficult conditions with three birdies on the second nine to finish at even-par 72. His 36-hole total of 3-under-par 141 leaves him in a four-way tie for third, three shots behind leader Bubba Watson.

“It was very difficult out there today, and anything even par or better at a major is normally a good score, especially today, and I’d say it’s kept me in the tournament,” Scott said. “There’s no way guys were playing flawless tee to green. It was so difficult. The greens were getting so firm in the afternoon that if you were out of position, it was almost impossible to hold greens. You needed to be right in the fairway and hopefully with a wedge in.”

When he won the Masters last year, Scott’s second round mirrored what happened Friday – a 72.

“Just because you did it last year that doesn’t mean you’re going to do it again,” Scott said, “but there’s always opportunities with good shots on the back nine.”

He said he gave himself a chance with two quality shots at the ninth, where he made par.

“[Those were] the best swings I’d made to that point,” Scott said. “I wanted to just keep that feeling for the back nine, and I played a good back nine. It was solid.”

Scott’s mission was to avoid dropping a shot at the 10th, 11th and 12th and to get to the par-5 13th and 15th with a chance at birdies.

That’s just what he did. He lipped out a chance for birdie at the 17th, but he saved par at the 18th after hitting a poor drive into the trees.

“You’ve got to take a bit of luck,” he said.

Scott said anyone still playing has a chance going into the weekend.

“It’s going to be a demanding weekend if we continue to have this nice, dry weather,” he said.

Scott said ending the day under par became his goal after finishing the first nine. So he wound up semi-satisfied.

“It wasn’t exactly what I was looking for, but given everything, I’m absolutely satisfied with that,” Scott said. “It just means that tomorrow’s round is extremely important. It’s going to have to be maybe the best round of the week.”

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