Patrick Reed Wins The 2018 Masters
His first career major championship victory
For the fourth consecutive year, the Masters Champion is a first-time major championship winner.
27-year old Patrick Reed bested the rest of the 2018 Masters Tournament field with a score of 15-under par. Reed’s breakthrough victory, his sixth on the PGA Tour, is the result of impressive shotmaking and even more impressive putting throughout the tournament.
Reed began Sunday with a sizable lead over Northern Irishman, Rory McIlroy. The final group, which many thought would be similar to the showdown at Hazeltine during the 2016 Ryder Cup, would see one player rise to the challenge while the other would falter.
Reed began the day at 14-under par and managed to escape some early trouble. A bogey on the first hole seemed likely to derail Reed’s chances, but a strong birdie at the third would right the ship. He would be even at the halfway point of the round. Two birdies paired with a single bogey on the backside would be just enough as Reed would win by one shot over Rickie Fowler.
McIlroy had no such luck, and was unable to make a run at his first green jacket. Beginning the day at 11-under par, McIlroy would shoot a final-round score of 74 that would drop him back to a fifth-place finish for the tournament. The breaks just did not go Rory’s way, no matter how hard he tried.
Reed is now a part of golf’s most exclusive club: Masters Champions.
Just 367 days until The 2019 Masters Tournament!
Highlights From The Masters
Patrick Reed Rises to the Challenge
There is pressure in winning any tournament on the PGA Tour. And then, there is the pressure of winning The Masters.
Since turning pro in 2011, Reed had become somewhat of an anomaly. He would often have spurts lasting months where he played very well and would most times be in contention. And, he had won five times previously.
It was a different story when it came to the major championships. With the exception of the 2017 PGA Championship where Reed finished tied for second, he had never finished in the top ten of any major championship. To most, he seemed to be more of a tour grinder than a serious major championship contender.
That all changed Sunday as Reed, at just 27-years old, pushed through the tests offered by Augusta National and rose to the challenge of becoming a Masters Champion.
Fowler Impresses on Sunday
Rickie Fowler has always been a fan favorite and a popular pick at any tournament to have a chance to win.
While many of his peers and friends have been able to get over the hurdle of winning a major championship (Spieth, Watson, Thomas, etc.), Fowler has not been able to breakthrough for his first major championship victory.
While he has had many impressive finishes in major championships, his weekend play has always been criticized – and for the most part, rightfully so.
Perhaps that changed with his rounds of 65(-7) and 67(-5) on Saturday and Sunday. His 4-under par backside nearly put him into a playoff and was one of the best rounds of the day.
Spieth Nearly Makes a Monumental Charge
Stop me if you have heard this before: Jordan Spieth plays some of his very best golf at Augusta National.
On Sunday, Spieth charged up the leaderboard with an absolutely phenomenal round of 64 (-8). As his round progressed, so too did the notion that we were all watching something that may go down in Masters history.
Spieth did manage to get to 13-under par for the tournament, but it would not be enough. Either way, that Sunday round should strike the fear of God into his competitors for many, many Aprils to come.
Hoffman Aces 16
The garbage man draining an ace on Sunday at The Masters!
The ace helped Hoffman card a final round score of 67(-5) that would solidify another solid performance for him.
He’s a strong performer at Augusta National and also finished in the top ten at the 2017 US Open. After this past weekend, I am in no position to give betting advice. But I imagine he offers some fairly good odds for this year’s US Open.
The Masters Tournament Is Everything Great About Golf
It’s the best golf tournament in the world. It’s the best golf course in the world. The course and tournament deserve a highlight as much as any of the players.
Takeaways From the Year’s First Major
Rickie Fowler Will Win a Major
While he did not get the job done at this year’s Masters, you can fully expect Fowler to breakthrough and win a major. Finishing just one back of the lead, in a tournament that Reed appeared to be a runaway train, is more a sign of progress than a miscue for Fowler.
With nine finishes in the top ten and three of those finishes being second place, Fowler is performing way too well to not breakthrough and get at least one.
At 29-years old, Fowler is becoming more of a veteran than a newcomer on tour. That should help him as he looks to capture that elusive first major.
Rory McIlroy Still Has Time
In the ten Masters that Rory McIlroy has competed in, he has fared well. With five top-five finishes, it should be clear that Rory has the game to take on all of the challenges that Augusta National presents.
Going forward, it is more a matter of putting together four solid rounds and avoiding mistakes. Easier said than done, sure, but he has done just that in the other four major championships he has won.
Expect McIlroy to complete the career grand slam. It may not be next year or the year after that, but counting him out at just 28-years old just doesn’t make sense.
Augusta National Competes as Much as the Players
I sincerely wish that more courses were designed with the detail and intricacy of Augusta National. The course created by Bobby Jones, Clifford Roberts and Allister Makenzie in 1930’s has more than stood the test of time.
85 years later alongside the most progression in the game’s history, Augusta National still stands as the most fun course to watch fight back. It is not just a first-shot course, or a course made for only exceptional short games – it is an everything course.
It also goes to show that good designs last. While they may need some renovating years down the road, the best designs have the bones to always be great tests of golf. They don’t have to be 8,500 yard monstrosities with 15-yard wide fairways. It’s all in the details.
Patrick Reed’s Reputation Precedes Him
Not a lot of people like Patrick Reed. In fact, it seems he has very few true fans.
As it turns out, the following can make for a poor reputation:
- Getting kicked off of the University of Georgia’s golf team for cheating
- Nearly getting kicked off of Augusta State University’s team for the very same thing
- Having your parents escorted out of The 2016 US Open
- Claiming to be one of the world’s best players in 2014 after just his third win.
- Yelling a homophobic slur and expletive while mic’d up in 2016
- Berating rules officials by saying, “I guess my name needs to be Jordan Spieth, guys.”
It will be interesting to see if Reed does attempt to regain some good standing with fans. While every sport needs a villain, it may not be a cape he’s comfortable with wearing for long.
Tiger Woods and Phil Mickelson
It was a bit of an anticlimactic tournament for both Woods and Mickelson. Both came to Augusta National on the heels of great performances and looked poised to make a run at another green jacket.
That would not be the case for either. Both struggled with control and making crucial putts all week long. The good news is that without their best form, both Mickelson and Woods managed to make the cut and grind through the weekend.
Time will tell whether either of the two legends have any more major victories in store. For now, it’s a matter of enjoying watching some of the game’s best ever competitors still go out and compete on the biggest stages against the best players in the world.
2018 Masters Contests Results
This year marked our largest Masters Contest to date. With more than 1,750 entries, the competition to win the grand prize was certainly tight.
Out of all of the entries, 21 people correctly picked Patrick Reed to win The Masters. One person did unsubscribe, however, so their entry was removed from the contest.
Out of the 20 people who correctly picked, Bryan Fields name was drawn from the hat this morning as the grand prize winner. He wins:
- A 2018 & 2019 Fairways Golf Membership
- An Unlimited Range Pass
- A Titleist Golf Hat
- A Footjoy Pullover
- 4 18-hole greens fees for Mallard Creek
For the other 19 contestants, they will receive a complimentary 18-hole greens fee to Mallard Creek.
For everyone else, we will be having another contest for the US Open. Stay tuned!