No more will Adam Scott have to worry about people questioning his resolve and ability to perform under pressure. In the most important tournament of the year, Scott came up with some incredible shots down the stretch when he needed them most. Playing in the penultimate group, Scott came to 18 tied for the lead with Angel Cabrera. After his tee shot wandered just left of the fairway, he put his approach pin-high, about 20 feet from the flag. With Cabrera in the middle of the fairway behind him, Scott knew he needed to put the pressure on. He did. Although Cabrera also birdied the 18th, the long putt gave Scott the confidence he needed to come out on top in the playoff. After nearly matching each others shots through the first playoff hole, they arrived at the 10th tee, where Scott piped his drive down the center of the fairway. Although Cabrera elected to play an iron off the tee, he drove it nearly as far. Again in similar spots on the fairway, they each ended up with make-able Birdie putts. After Cabrera’s try curled just inches behind the hole, Scott stepped up and drained his Birdie to become the first Australian to bear the title of Masters Champion. All-in-all it was a drama filled Masters week, and although controversy over a questionable ruling detracted from the golf on Saturday, an incredible Sunday afternoon at Augusta National showed why the Masters Tournament continues to be the most exciting and meaningful week of golf year in and year out.
It was a far cry from the week he hoped he’d be having, but James’ 90 point week doesn’t come as that much of a surprise. His team played poorly all around, with all of his players shooting themselves out of contention by Saturday afternoon. Although top 25’s by Rory McIlroy and Jason Dufner prevented the week from being a complete disaster, it was certainly a week for James’ team to forget.
Like James, Lawrence burned two Konkel Explosions this week and wound up with only slightly more to show for it. Keegan Bradley racked up 10 Bogeys or worse on Saturday, and finished outside the top 50, while Webb Simpson and Nicolas Colsaerts missed the cut altogether. After an opening 78, Nick Watney did well to bring himself back into the top 15 and earn a Konkel’d 35 points, while Michael Thompson crept into the top 25 on Sunday. Both James and Lawrence lost quite a bit of ground on the rest of the league this week.
Other than Hunter Mahan, who flamed out spectacularly, Fuchs’ team did quite well for themselves this week. Both Ryan Moore and John Senden registered top 50’s, with Moore’s coming on the strength of a final round 68. Steve Stricker fell back on Sunday, but still hung inside the top 25 for an Konkel’d 25 points, and Brandt Snedeker had an up and down final round to drop from the lead back into a tie for sixth place. Although he dropped back into fourth place, Fuchs will be happy with a solid week, after a stretch of six weeks which saw him averaging under 35 points a tournament.
Considering the year he has been having so far, this week was a resounding success for Dave’s team. Dave had seven golfers teeing it up this week, and all seven managed to crack the top 50. Despite breaking par in just one of his four rounds, and carding a 10 on the par-3 10th hole in his final round, Bubba Watson still managed to hang around in the top fifty along with Robert Garrigus. A poor weekend cost Justin Rose a likely top ten finish, but it David Toms’ surprising top fifteen will have more than made up for that disappointment. Once again Lee Westwood made it into the top ten of a Major Championship, as has happened so many times, just could not get the job done and had to settle for a share of eighth. Dave has benched 125 points from his top three players so far this season, and if would just submit his rosters, he would still be in contention for a spot on the podium.
It’s been hard to find any flaws with Bryce’s team through the first third of the season, and this week was no different. Despite leaving 95 points on the bench, Bryce churned out another monster week. Tiger Woods raised his point total on the season to a ridiculous 480, and with many big events to come, he is on pace for well over 1000 points, a mark he would be the first to achieve. Bryce’s Konkel Explosion on Woods was well used this week, with the world #1 winding up in a tie for fourth. Although that was his only top ten, five of his other nine golfers cracked the top 25, with three of them in the top fifteen. Unfortunately the only one of those top fifteens that Bryce played was Dustin Johnson, who has turned his season around nicely since it’s slow start. Bill Haas continued his excellent play with a top 25 this week, while K.J. Choi cracked the top fifty in an event he has been close to winning in the past. Bryce still holds the league’s poll position, but after Scott’s win this week, Brent is right behind him and fielding an excellent roster in next week’s RBC Heritage.
Many of us doubted Beast when he took Jason Day and Sergio Garcia in the first and second rounds of this year’s draft, but with 215 and 170 points respectively, they have been easily the most successful players from the first two rounds. Sergio carded his third top ten in just six starts, while Jason Day’s third place finish was his second such result and fourth top ten. Matt Kuchar’s eighth place finish was just his third top ten of the season, but with his other top ten being his win at the Accenture Match Play Championship, he is still a huge reason as to why Beast finds himself within striking distance of first place. Had weekend rounds of 74-76 not derailed Jim Furyk’s week, Beast may have found himself even closer to the lead, but Furyk had to settle for a top 25, and ten more points than the newly acquired Peter Hanson. With a talented roster that looks primed to perform in the season’s biggest events, Beast is well on his way to contending for the Richard J. Osicki Memorial Trophy and his first ever Spreadsheet Fantasy Championship.
Yes Sir! It took 13 tries and plenty of heartbreak, but Brent Harder is finally a Major Champion. After watching Adam Scott’s tragic collapse at last year’s Open Championship, Brent got right back on the horse and threw his first Konkel Explosion of the season on the talented Aussie. 400 points and some odd post-victory ‘butt convulsions’ later, Brent finds himself back in contention and just five points out of first place. Although it took 13 Majors for Brent to get his first win, he has had a few close calls including two runner-up finishes from Scott, who has racked up seven top 15 finishes in his last 9 Major Championship appearances. Scott was the big story for Brent this week, as the rest of his team couldn’t turn this great week into an exceptional week. Rickie Fowler continues to play Phil Mickelson-like up-and-down golf, and a Sunday stretch of eight over par through ten holes dropped him from the top ten and out of the top 25. Luke Donald and Charl Schwartzel managed even par and one over par rounds respectively, and just held onto a spot in the top 25, while Ian Poulter’s pollen allergies contributed to his poor week and missed cut. All things considered, it was an excellent week for Brent, as he avenged his near miss at last year’s Open Championship, and managed to break his streak of 32 consecutive weeks without a win.
And so an excellent Masters week concludes with a fitting end and a fitting Champion. Congratulations Adam Scott on your Masters victory, a classy performance that Bobby Jones would be proud of.