2022 Masters Recap


Scottie Scheffler is now a Masters Champion. (Courtesy of Twitter)

Scottie Scheffler is the number one golfer on the planet: a winner of four events in his last six attempts, a Ryder Cup assassin and now a Masters Champion.

After another great week at Augusta National, the 25-year-old Texan took an 18-hole march to victory on Sunday, shooting a 71 in the final group to finish at 10-under par, beating Rory McIlroy by three strokes. 

Heading into Sunday, Scheffler was ahead of Australia’s Cameron Smith by three shots. Smith birdied the first two holes while Scheffler parred to cut the lead down to one. They both landed short of the green on the third hole, giving Smith the opportunity to bring it to a tie. Scheffler went first and sunk the chip for birdie while Smith missed a par putt, taking the lead back to three. 

Smith was relatively irrelevant for the remainder of the front nine, bogeying four and birdieing seven to shoot one-under 35 on the front. Scheffler had a four-shot lead making the turn. Both players bogeyed the 10th, so the lead remained at four. Eleven has been one of the hardest holes on tour ever since the inception of the Masters. The first leg of Amen Corner had two birdies all day, with one of them being from Smith. He made a three on 11 to cut the lead to three. 

As the final group made the turn,  McIlroy made an eagle on the par-5 13th. He brought himself down to six-under on the tournament and seven-under on the day. Smith stepped up to the 12th tee at seven-under par with Scheffler at 10 and McIlroy at six. He needed to go flag-hunting on 12 to put the pressure on Scheffler. The far-right pin location on 12 does not set up for a tight shot, but Smith needed one nonetheless. He put a risky shot within a few feet to lock down his victory at The Players in March, but he was not as lucky this week. He dunked it in the water and made a triple-bogey to play himself out of the tournament.

Now, Mcllroy is on the 18th fairway and Scheffler is on the 13th tee. Scheffler had two birdie-able holes in 13 and 15 left on the table, so his chances were significantly better than Mcllroy’s. McIlroy hit his second shot on 18 in the bunker while Scheffler layed up on 13. As Scheffler and Smith lined up their third shots into the 13th green, a Tiger-level roar came barreling down the hill from the 18th green. On-course reporter Dottie Pepper said that Scheffler was not fazed at all even though it was “very clear what just happened.” 

McIlroy popped his third shot out of the bunker and rolled it right into the hole for birdie, putting him at seven-under on the tournament. He shot eight-under 64 on Sunday, his best round and finish at Augusta, the best round on Sunday in Masters history, and just one shot off the course record of 63. He had done everything he could to win his first Masters, but Scheffler drilled his par putt and maintained the three-shot lead. 

Scheffler won the tournament on 14 and 15, making two straight birdies to drop him down to 12-under, good enough for a five shot lead the victory. He four-putted the 18th to drop two shots and finish at 10-under, but it was beyond over by then. Those 30 minutes while the final group was on Amen Corner was worth every second of the week. 

Scheffler and Smith have had the biggest seasons on tour so far, so them making up the final group at The Masters is extremely indicative of the season as a whole. Another great Masters is in the books, and we’ll have to wait another 360 days until Augusta National graces our television sets again.