Scottie Scheffler gets mad, sets course record in Houston
November 12, 2021
By Sean Martin , PGATOUR.COM
- Scheffler finished Friday by signing for the lowest score in the short history of this renovated rendition of Memorial Park. (Andy Lyons/Getty Images)
HOUSTON – Scottie Scheffler got mad. Then he went low.
A course record didn’t seem likely after a frustrating start to his day. Finishing up his delayed first round, he missed a 5-foot par putt on the last hole to sign for a 2-over 72. A poor tee shot to start his second round and another early bogey put him over the edge.
“Anger can go a few ways on the golf course,” he said. “You can use it and get even more frustrated and more pissed off and you start thinking negatively. I used that anger today as a positive.”
Scheffler finished Friday by signing for the lowest score in the short history of this renovated rendition of Memorial Park, which is in its second year hosting the Hewlett Packard Enterprise Houston Open. Scheffler’s 62 bested the previous record – set by three players in last year’s final round – by a stroke.
It also was Scheffler’s fourth round of 62 or lower since the start of the 2019-20 season (his rookie year), the most on TOUR in that span. That includes a 59 shot in last year’s FedExCup Playoffs.
Scheffler leapt from outside of the cut line and into contention. At 6-under 134 (72-62), he’s four back of leader Martin Trainer.
Scheffler is seeking his first PGA TOUR win, and it’s about the only thing missing from the 25-year-old’s sterling resume. He was the 2019 Korn Ferry Tour Player of the Year and 2020 PGA TOUR Rookie of the Year. He has qualified for the TOUR Championship in both of his seasons and has finished in the top 10 in the past three majors. He capped his Ryder Cup debut by birdieing the first four holes in his Singles match with Jon Rahm to dispatch the World No. 1, 4 and 3.
Winning may have been far from Scheffler’s mind after Thursday’s start, however. He double-bogeyed his third hole to fall to 3 over.
He thought he’d sorted out his swing after a quick range session between Friday’s rounds. Then he duck-hooked his tee shot off the first tee. A bogey on the fourth hole was the last straw.
“After I bogeyed No. 4 I basically told myself I've had enough of this crap,” he said. “That's what I told my caddie, too, walking down the fifth fairway. Hit a nice putt on six and just kind of turned the round around from there.”
He birdied six of seven holes from Nos. 5-11, then added birdies at 15 and 17. He missed just four fairways in the second round after hitting fewer than half in his opening round. His 12 greens hit were three more than in the opening round.
“This golf course can be pretty challenging from the Bermuda rough and you've got to hit the ball in play,” he said. “If you're hitting it in the rough to elevated greens that you can't hold just because you're hitting knucklers out of the rough, so it was very important to get the ball in the fairway.”