Sunday, April 14, 2019
AUGUSTA, GA (WRDW/WAGT) -- Tiger Woods walked away from Augusta National Golf Club on Sunday with his fifth green jacket. It was a stunning comeback victory for a golfer many thought would never sniff a major championship ever again.
He proved them all wrong. But for most of Sunday, Woods and the rest of the field were being bested by one man. But it all came crashing down.
A bad day gets worse for Francesco Molinari
The stars were aligning for former caddie-turned-golf pro Francesco Molinari right up until hole no. 12 when it all fell apart for the Italian.
Molinari went for his 8-iron to make the shot on 12 when the ball landed in the water hazard.
"Just a bad execution," Molinari said. "I think we picked the right shot and just didn't hit it hard enough, as simple as that. And it was tough today with the wind gusting and I managed to scramble well on the front nine and I think I just had a couple of mental lapses on the back nine that were costly. But it is what it is."
From there, Molinari looked to recover, but came into water trouble again on hole No. 15.
Instead of sliding on a green jacket this year, Molinari is reduced to trying to diagnose what happened that kept him yards away from making history as the first Italian to win the Masters.
"I don't know, from my point of view it's just a step along the way," Molinari said. "I think it wasn't my day today. That ball on 12 if it's one yard further left it probably goes in the bunker and like I said, the third shot on 15, it could easily not have clipped the tree and sometimes it is your day, sometimes it isn't, but I'm really happy of the way I felt out there today. I was calm, collected, never panicked, even after the first double bogey, and I'll learn a lot I think from today. Obviously I've done a couple of things that I wish I had done differently now, but I'll learn from my mistakes."
Xander Schauffele's late run comes up short
Xander Schauffele's second year at the Masters could have been something magical for the 25-year-old, but just like everyone else below Tiger, he's left wondering what could have been.
Still, the young man counts himself blessed to have seen Tiger's historic day.
"I think this situation is very unique," Schauffele said. "I'm not one bit sad. I told my caddie on the last hole that we just proved to ourselves that we can win on this property, and you know, I started with a 73, so I was very behind the 8-ball and clawed my way back."
Being back at second place for the second time at a major isn't anything he's concerning himself with, either.
"Obviously to do it in this fashion is sort of -- if I told you I had the 54-hole lead and I just looked up at the end, would be more of a surprise. I came from an 8-under -- I was at 8-under this morning and shot 4-under today," Schauffele said. "I came from a position that I am very familiar with, so I was quite familiar most of the day, even though there was a lot of ruckus going on."
Brooks Koepka frustrated, but proud with the way his day ended
Brooks Koepka found himself in the hunt for a green jacket all weekend long. He could have walked away with it, but the win wasn't in the cards.
It was a bit different last time when Koepka managed to best Woods in a tournament setting at the PGA Tournament late last year.
"I enjoy the battle, I enjoy everything that goes on with it, and he got the better of me this time and it's fun," Koepka said. "I'm sure he's ecstatic about it, but hopefully there will be a few more."