The Masters: Adding to golf’s history

During this past weekend the world’s best professional golfers took to Augusta National Golf Course in Augusta, Georgia to play in the 2015 Masters Tournament, which ended up being a weekend full of history made.

The tournament kicked off on Thursday, April 9, with Tiger Woods making a return to tournament play and Ben Crenshaw announcing his final run in the tournament, it seemed that it would be one to remember. Yet, those were not the only two things many people were left to gossip about once Thursday’s round was done. Jordan Spieth had come close to setting a record of the lowest score for 18-holes with his score of 64.

Spieth’s round was mostly clean, but there were some interesting situations. There would be a breath-holding moment for Spieth on the hole 14. As he swung his driver, the ball took to the trees vanishing through the branches. It would later be discovered that the ball had made it to the middle of the fairway. Another shot would go haywire as Spieth’s putt on 15 glided left of the hole. He would then attempt a rescue-shot on 16 from the rough, which would ricochet off the flag, ultimately leaving Spieth with a putt from just two feet away.

The first round had more than it’s fair share of exciting moments. Jason Day had made four birdies within one hour of his time at Augusta National and there were plenty more to come at the rate he was going. With his great play he moved up into the second place spot with a score of five-under, while first place Jordan Spieth remained at seven-under.

On Friday, April 10, Jordan Spieth had made history. With his score of 66, it gave him the lead of 14-under par, as well as the lowest 36-hole score in Master’s history. Spieth had beaten Raymond Floyd’s 1976 marked score by only one stroke. The only comment he had about his smooth playing for Friday, which was told to CBS reporter Tom Ranaldi, was that “it was less windy”.

“The last couple days, it doesn’t mean anything unless I can close it out,” said Spieth to Ranaldi. “I don’t want this to go in as the 36-hole record but as somebody who didn’t win.”

With his second appearance at the Masters, Spieth was nothing but humble about his progress towards winning as he told Ranaldi “The last couple days, it doesn’t mean anything unless I can close it out, I don’t want this to go in as the 36-hole record but as somebody who didn’t win.”

Yet, it seemed that Spieth had nothing to really worry about as the only players close enough to catch up to his 14-under score were those who were at a score of seven-under. Those contenders were Justin Rose, Dustin Johnson and Paul Casey. As for the more prominent names in golf, Rory McIlroy, Tiger Woods, Bubba Watson and Sergio García were all tied for 19th after day two, with a score of two-under.

The following day, Saturday April 11th, the return of the Tiger Woods everyone knew had taken to Augusta National. It was Woods that fans began to cheer for as he walked across greens, fairways, roughs and tee boxes. Woods started his day out with three birdies on the first four holes. He would then make a few mistakes, but come back with another birdie on hole 13 to lower his score to seven-under par. Unfortunately, Woods’ streak would come to a halt as hole 14 was not so giving, leaving him with a tap-in bogey.

Phil Mickelson was also one of the many golfers to have a successful day. With Spieth having the lead at 14-under, Mickelson had birdied his shot on the ninth to fall only four behind Spieth. 

Yet, just like Woods’, Mickelson had come across a hole he would not quite get a handle on. The 17th had caused Mickelson’s slip-up as he bogeyed the hole, leaving him to fall into third place at the end of the day. Mickelson would lose his chance at a face-off with Spieth on Sunday, but he would remain five shots behind him in the overall scheme of things as he was 11-under for the tournament.

In the last day of the tournament, Sunday, April 12, many would think that one could not endure the pressure to close it out, but Spieth held his ground as he continued to make history. He had won the day with a score of 18-under, leaving Mickelson and Justin Rose to tie for second with a score of 14-under. 

His record breaking didn’t just stop when he shot the lowest score for 36 holes. Instead, he also set a record for the first player to get to 19-under in the history of the Masters, a tournament which has lasted 79 years. He also broke the tournament record for amount of birdies made, as he shot his 26th birdie on the 10th hole. No matter what any of the elite golf members tried to do, no one could catch up to Spieth’s small but definitive lead. 

As shots were veering left and right, wrist bones being dislocated and having a close leaderboard, Jordan Spieth kept his head in the game and his eye on the prize. On the 18th hole Spieth and Rose took their turns to finish out their match. Rose would make his putt raising him to tie for second at a score of 14-under. While Spieth would miss his par putt, he would knock in an easy putt for bogey, sealing his win at the 2015 Masters with a score of 18-under. His family, college friends and girlfriend were all gathered amongst the gallery to congratulate the new champion on his career and life-changing win.