« I really want to win badly, » he fired on Friday evening at TPC Scottsdale, where Schauffele has a unique advantage through 36 holes at the Waste Management Phoenix Open.
It has certainly been a while since Schauffele is among the winners on the PGA Tour. Not that he didn’t get close. Since his last victory at the Sentry Tournament of Champions 2019, Schauffele has finished second seven times. Heck, since the beginning of last season he’s only placed outside the top 25 twice in 24 starts, with his last non-top 25 coming last summer in Harbor Town.
Schauffele doesn’t need to be reminded of that – even if a few , including himself, would claim he won « low gross » last season at East Lake. He knows. He also thinks he knows why.
« We just realized where I was going. I think I’m just getting impatient, » he explained. “I feel like I had a sense of urgency when I really didn’t need it. I would look back on the week and think, “Man, why did I jump the gun over there? All I had to do was play decently and I would have been right there. “I think it’s just a result of the push and push and push and decent results, but not what we really want. I played well in a calm mood and then I did my best. “
Why Schauffele wants a beginner’s mentality
A typical example: After an opening on Thursday 66th, Schauffele got off to a slow start in lap 2 when he “saw all the names in the rankings soar”. Then he remembered: Keep your head down. After a birdie in his first 11 holes, Schauffele underplayed his last seven holes in 6.
The back nine 30 included birdies at # 12 (from 25 feet), 13, 14, and 18 (after seeing his approach from left fairway bunker at 5 feet). Schauffele also preserved a 21-foot eagle on par 5-15.
« Quite happy with the result, » said Schauffele afterwards, « and obviously what I thought worked today. »But will it work this weekend? Schauffele, who realizes Steve Stricker and Keegan Bradley are sure to try.
« I’ll wake up tomorrow and someone will be four shots in front of me or something, » said Schauffele. « I think this is one of those golf courses where no lead is very safe and, like I said, you really need to keep my head down and calm. »
BY Brentley Romine
FROM Mercer Baggs
FROM Mercer Baggs
Jordan Spieth is in the mix with 36 holes at the Waste Management Phoenix Open when Spieth and his fans ask themselves: Is he finally back?
At 53 years old, Steve Stricker is a shot from the lead by 36 Holes at the Waste Management Phoenix Open
With a limit of 5,000 fans on site on Thursday at TPC Scottsdale, two surprise leaders popped up at the WMPO.