The most anticipated Masters in two decades was filled with fireworks even if it may have ended with an unsatisfying dud. Patrick Reed stole the show, keeping his distance from Rory and holding off Spieth and Rickie’s desperate attempts to get close to him. Reed joins the illustrious company of recent winners Danny Willett and Sergio Garcia.
While the main storyline has been Reed’s estranged relationship with his parents and sister, there were plenty of memorable moments from this year’s Masters that you can hold onto, especially if you feel like P Reed stole something from you on Sunday.
Before the tournament play even officially began on Sunday, there were two unbelievable aces in the Wednesday Par 3 competition. The first came from Jack Nicklaus’s 15-year-old grandson, in Masters caddie coveralls, for his first hole-in-one of his young life. The second came from Tony Finau, who Bill Gramatica’d his ankle while celebrating his ace. Finau must have been so embarrassed with popping his ankle out of socket on live television during a celebration that he gutted out a T10 finish.
On Thursday many Americans were thrilled to watch Sergio spin his ball back into the water 5 times in a row on number 15, eliminating him from a chance to defend his green jacket on one hole alone. For me, I got more enjoyment out of Phil air-balling a shot from the trees on Saturday. Anytime I can do something that a pro does on a golf course, it gives me hope for my dream of making it on the Champions Tour.
I have watched this probably 10 times now and still can’t figure out what Phil hit on that whiff pic.twitter.com/PY0DqK9Z6w
— Dan Hauser (@DanHauserGolf) April 7, 2018
Even if the ending was not what you were hoping for, the back 9 on Sunday in Augusta did not disappoint. Spieth nearly broke the course record but was literally stopped by a tree branch, Rickie almost staged a late comeback, and Reed made putt after putt. While all this was happening and even with him in the mix, Jon Rahm found time to feed the wildlife while crossing Rae’s Creek.
I always forget how old these kids are. Jordan Spieth is 24 but arguably should have won four Masters. Jon Rahm may have the sideburns of a middle-aged man, but he is only 23 as clearly shown in the video above. After his 320 yard drive on number 13, and during a mid-round snack, Rahm found time to enjoy a little neature in Augusta. He was crossing Rae’s Creek when he stopped to share his snack with some fish or maybe even a little turtle, completely forgetting the fact that he was still in contention for the most prestigious major golf tournament of the year. After he comes back to planet Earth, he realizes his friends had left him behind so he nervously jogs after them. Even with his temper tantrums after every bad (or even not perfect like where he yelled that the ball was in the trap but ended up rolling out to 10 feet from the pin) shot, I can’t help but love him. He is just a big goofy kid who likes water animals. And the fact that he can appreciate something like that on a Sunday at the Masters let’s me know that he’s a pretty good kid.
[Side note: I spent probably two hours trying to screen record the replay coverage just to find this 11 second clip. Then I had to upgrade my WordPress to allow videos to be uploaded. I did this because I love this clip so much and so should you.]
CPO also had a patron at Augusta National on Thursday. My older brother was able to go through work and also able to provide us with a Tale From The Tournament. If any of the 15 people read this are at a PGA Tour Event any time this year and have a good story, feel free to email it to me firstname.lastname@example.org and I will put it in the blog. Also if you have a better name than Tales From The Tournament feel free to let me know too.
The honorary Tale From The Tournament is a story of luck, friendship, and redneck enthusiasm. After entertaining his clients and calling back to his wife from the complimentary long distance phone bank, freeing him up until the end of the round, my brother made his way back to 17 tee box where he had set up his chairs earlier in the morning. He noticed there were a couple of Tennessee Vols fans wandering around 17 tee, looking lost and out of place. Being that we’re from Tennessee, my brother struck up a conversation with them and offered up his two empty seats for them to sit down and rest for a minute.
Turns out they were from Rhea County, which is right outside Chattanooga where we are from (you know a town is redneck when it goes by the county rather than the city name). These guys had lucked into four tickets for the entire weekend from a former co-worker.
“Diddy couldn’t take but about two hours of the walking. He’s back with the rest at the motel,” my brother’s new friends were telling him.
When my brother prodded about “the rest” the two told him, “There’s eighteen of us. We’re all staying up at the Clarion in Aiken. We just been coming in shifts.”
Eighteen people sharing four tickets. And all eighteen of them holed up in the Clarion Suites. If that doesn’t show what the allure of the Masters brings then I don’t know what does. You better believe me and my eighteen closest friends would do the same thing if we got four tickets to the Masters.