19th Hole

Greg Ellis
Great Golf Academy
Goodyear, AZ

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Did You Root for Patrick Reed to Win the Masters?

Masters golf week is my favorite week of the year. The first major of the year happens and Spring is in the air. 

Early on I had picked Phil Mickelson as my favorite to win this year. He had been playing great golf and could have become the oldest champion if he could have pulled it out. It wasn’t meant to be.

This was the return of Tiger Woods playing at Augusta for the first time in a couple of years and by his recent past performances the Sports Books all picked Tiger as the favorite. It wasn’t meant to be.

The Masters started on Wednesday with exciting happenings at the Par 3 championship. Tom Watson became the oldest player to win the Par 3 championship. This was overshadowed by the Golden Bear’s grandson GT making an ace on the 9 hole with Jack, Tom and Gary Player looking on. He hit the most beautiful shot behind the hole and immediately Gary Player started announcing “you’re going to like it.” GT hit the shot like he knew what he was doing. It caught the slope behind the hole and started rolling back to the hole and tracked its way into the hole. Jack stated afterward that this was his greatest moment in golf.

Fast forward now to Thursday with the first round about to begin. Jack and Gary hit the ceremnial first tee shots. Jack hit a great tee shot and then Gary hit one and he hit like he was going to play as he started going after it. Then it was time for the competitors to begin. It was the smallest field in 21 years. 87 players started but there were really only about fifteen guys with a real chance to win. Guys like Rory, Rickie, Justin, Dustin, Jordan were the headliners.

Jordan did not disappoint. He jumped out to the first round lead and everyone was already annointing him the champion; but it wasn’t meant to be.

Day two we had a new leader Patrick Reed. After an opening round of 69, he followed that up with a 66.

Day three Patrick held onto a slim lead after shooting 67. Enter Rickie and Rory, who both shot 65 on “moving day.” It was shaping up to be a great final round.  Patrick and Rory were going to be paired together and history was in the making for both. Rory was trying to complete the career Grand Slam and Patrick was trying to become the first player to have all four rounds in the sixties. Hard to believe that no one has ever shot all four rounds in the sixties in the past.

Day four Jordan made a charge. Rickie made a charge. Rory faltered. There was drama coming down the stretch until Jordan made bogey on 18 and Rickie needed a two on 18 to catch Patrick. It wasn’t meant to be.

Patrick hit a great drive and a great second shot behind the hole on 18 but there was still work to do. A downhill slippery putt slid by 3 feet and Patrick was living the dream we all had as kids, a three footer on the last hole to win the Masters. He made the putt and your Master Champion was crowned.  

What should have been a great story was overshadowed by the pundants that did not like Patrick Reed and began finding everything wrong with him rather than exalting him as the Champion. We all have things in our past from when we were young; but who holds those things against you? Also, I heard several people say the wrong person won. Not sure how they could say that. He played all four rounds under par and outplayed the field. Patrick will be a great champion.

So, give Patrick Reed his do and be happy for him. He will represent Augusta well. 

Be sure to tune in to the Bunker to Bunker Golf Show every Saturday morning from 7:00 to 9:00 a.m. or on ArizonaSports now on 98.7 fm or on the internet at www.arizonasports.com for more tips and updates on all of the week’s golfing news in the Valley and around the world. Join Greg, Jim Hill, and Marty Monaghan for a comprehensive look at the golf world for the week.