Masters brings unexpected views, shocks fans

The Masters concluded on Apr. 11 on Augusta National Golf Course in Augusta, GA.

Photo used with permission from Google Commons

The Masters concluded on Apr. 11 on Augusta National Golf Course in Augusta, GA.

Hideki Matsuyama became the first-ever Japanese player to win the Masters this year. Hideki was ranked 25th in the world heading into the Masters and overcame incredible odds to win. Alongside Matsuyama, players defied their rankings and only three players ranked in the world top 10 finished in the top 10 in Augusta.

Dustin Johnson was favored  to win the tournament and ranked as the best player in the world. Johnson got cut after scoring +5 in the first two days and was one of two top 10 players to get cut from the Masters, the other being Patrick Cantlay at +8. Rory McIlroy also got cut after two days at +6.

Some other favorites who had poor performances were Bryson Dechambeau (fifth in the world) who placed 46th, Brooks Koepka (11th in the world) who got cut, Lee Westwood (20th in the world) who got cut and Sungjae Im (19th in the world) who got cut and had the fourth worst score in the tournament.

Sophomore Devlin McCarthy said, “Bryson [Dechambeau] is one of my favorite players because he hits it so far and is a really fun player to watch. It was hard to watch him in Augusta because he doesn’t have good accuracy but hopefully he bounces back for the next tournament. Once he was out of contention, I really wanted Zalatoris to win because he’s young and he can hit the ball very far as well.”

  Heading into the final round, Matsuyama had a four-shot lead because of his six birdies in eight holes. Xander Schauffele, Marc Leishman, Justin Rose and Will Zalatoris were four strokes behind. Corey Conners and Jordan Speith were five and six strokes behind, trying to make a comeback.

In the final round, Matsuyama kept his lead and stayed at least two strokes of his competition until the last hole. Zalatoris was competitive and was -2 for the round and only lost by one stroke. Schauffele was close to Matsuyama until a late triple bogey took him from -10 to -7. Speith tied for third with Schauffele at -7 and Leishman and Rose finished at fifth and seventh with some of their worst rounds of the tournament.

I also thought it was cool that Masuyama won because it was the first for a Japanese golfer and Japan is a big golfing country.”

— Tyler Cosgrove

Sophomore Tyler Cosgrove said, “I was rooting for Speith because he won the Valero Open and his comeback from winning the Masters to being 100th in the world and now top 20. I think he will come back again and hopefully win another major tournament. I also thought it was cool that Masuyama won because it was the first for a Japanese golfer and Japan is a big golfing country.”

Matsuyama was the first Japanese male major winner for golf. He got recognition from some of the most famous celebrities in the world. These include golfer Tiger Woods, Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga, golfer Jack Nicklaus, tennis player Naomi Osaka and basketball player Stephen Curry.