With the Masters looming, Tiger Woods gained some momentum Saturday with a 2 and 1 win over Rory McIlroy at Austin Country Club to advance to the afternoon quarterfinals against Denmark's Lucas Bjerregaard in the WGC-Dell Technologies Match Play.

It was a clash of titans in central Texas. Woods, the tournament's No. 13 seed, took a 2-up lead on No. 4 seed McIlroy, with a clean scorecard through the front nine. He closed things out on the 17th green by clearing a hazard before draining the winning par putt from 13 feet.

Woods had built a 2-up advantage after birdies at the fifth and sixth holes and caught a break when McIlroy failed to convert a 3-foot putt on the 10th. McIlroy remained in contention with birdies at the 12th and 13th holes.

"It was a tough match for both of us,'' Woods said. "I knew it was going to be a ball-striking match. We were both playing well coming into this match and the year that Rory has had, he doesn't do anything poorly."

McIlroy has indeed been a hot streak of late, having won the Players Championship on March 17. The 29-year-old started the year in elite form with five straight top-6 finishes.

The win was a big one for Woods. The 43-year-old has won the match-play knockout event a record three times but has not won it since 2008.

Woods, who is ranked No. 14 on the PGA Tour, undoubtedly wants to be in top form ahead of the Masters, which begins on April 11. He hasn't won the tournament since 2005.

According to BetOnline, McIlroy has +750 odds to win the Masters, while Woods has +1,200 odds.

Tiger Woods of the United States and Rory McIlroy of Northern Ireland stand on the 13th tee during the fourth round of the World Golf Championships-Dell Technologies Match Play at Austin Country Club. Ezra Shaw/Getty Images