With howling winds and rock-hard greenery, Scottie Scheffler won a day at the Arnold Palmer Invitational, which tested the best of the PGA
How do you stop the PGA Tour pros, stronger and better than ever, from wiping out a golf course with sheer force alone? Grow rough patches, make green patches like concrete, stick pins in corners that only the daring will do and hope they face the howling winds.
It’s a recipe that brings the world’s best golfers to their knees, their nerves tense and their confidence shattered. That’s what they faced this week at Bay Hill for the Arnold Palmer Invitational, and it left Scottie Scheffler not the champion but the man standing last.
Scheffler, the 25-year-old burgeoning superstar, claimed his second PGA Tour title in his last three starts with a stellar performance that could make a name for himself on the tournament. On the toughest Sunday at Bay Hill in more than 40 years, Scheffler regularly played with himself in traffic jams that, as he stepped off the 18th green after a two-stroke from 70 feet, he found himself at position five under, one shot before one three including playing partner Viktor HovlandTyrrell Hatton, and Billy Horschel.
Scheffler’s even 72 in the final round was certainly so as the game’s best point repeatedly fell to Bay Hill’s tough setup. He didn’t pull off a trick with nine defenders, the other player finishing in the top six to avoid dropping a shot in the distance. Not that of course didn’t put him to the test.
Scottie Scheffler’s tough nerve survives the pressure at the Arnold Palmer Invitational
At the 15th hole, his nest goes straight into the magnolia trees. He could only advance 25 yards ahead of his second shot, still on the raw left. Bogey suddenly like a good score. But his third shot managed in rough terrain on the green, narrowly missing a bunker, and was on the green 22 feet away. He made a smack to save par.
On the next hole, where a par-5 could be achieved, Scheffler had bigger worries than deciding whether to take the green in two. He has to lie up after his tee shot goes in the right direction. With the green surrounded by water, he must make a third shot from short range. Scheffler, now playing his fourth shot and still not on the green, chipped six feet and hit the shot again.
Around him, his challengers disintegrated. Gary Woodland led with an eagle after 16 minutes, only to return it all with a par-three brace on the 17th. Hovland hit three shots in his last six holes. Horschel, trailing overnight at the start of the round, quickly saw it slip away with a score of 40 ahead and made a brave attempt to crawl back for a short when he missed a birdie putt. on the 18th green.
The tall, fat Texan was the one to wear Arnold Palmer’s iconic red cardigan as champion. Add this title to the Phoenix Open Management he won three weeks ago, Scheffler will rise to 5th place on the World Golf Ranking. Just two years after he won the Arnold Palmer award as the PGA Tour’s top rookie, he is now ranked above Rory McIlroy, Justin Thomas and Dustin Johnson.
Now he also has a long association with Palmer and Palmer’s course. Scheffler first played Bay Hill a decade ago, when he was a minor golfer at the Wyndham Cup. Palmer was not there that day, but Scheffler managed to see him once, at a Champions Tour event he attended with his father. Scheffler was still attending college in Texas when Palmer died in 2016, but the iconic image of Palmer swinging his golf club has always had an impact on him.
“For me, the first thing I think of Arnie, I think of his golf swing,” Scheffler said this week. “As someone who doesn’t have a perfect golf life, it’s been interesting to watch him and see how he plays golf, playing so hard and with an odd swing. I admire him a lot.”
Palmer was no longer there, standing by the 18 greens to shake the champion’s hand. But his presence at this tournament is still felt. Given what Scheffler showed on Sunday, he’s going to love what he’s seen.
https://fansided.com/2022/03/06/scottie-scheffler-arnold-palmer-invitational-win/ Scottie Scheffler survives the match to win Arnie .’s tournament