It was an electric final round at Augusta National, but in the end Patrick Reed was the last man standing. Here’s how things ended up as Reed won the Masters to claim his first career major title:
Leaderboard: Patrick Reed (-15), Rickie Fowler (-14), Jordan Spieth (-13), Jon Rahm (-11)
What it means: Where to begin? The two-man duel between Reed and Rory McIlroy never materialized after the two traded some early punches, giving way to a more wide-open finish than many expected. Spieth put the heat on with a historic rally, but an untimely bogey on the 18th hole gave Reed some breathing room. Fowler added pressure with a clutch birdie on No. 18 to draw to within a shot, but Reed never wavered. A birdie on No. 14 and four more pars were enough to close out one of the most anticipated Masters in recent memory, and at age 27 Reed joins the storied list of green jacket recipients.
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Round of the day: Spieth’s 64 left him short of a second green jacket, but it earned a spot in the history books at Augusta National. After starting the day nine shots off the pace, Spieth grabbed a brief share of the lead with a lengthy birdie on No. 16, his ninth of the day. But a pulled tee shot on the final hole clipped a tree and led to a closing bogey, which turned a record-tying 63 into a what-if 64.
Best of the rest: Paul Casey was the first player out to begin the third round, playing alongside non-competing marker Jeff Knox. But he moved into the middle of the pack with a 69, then shot a blistering 65 that like Spieth’s effort nearly challenged the course record of 63. Casey was 6 under in a five-hole stretch from Nos. 11-15, carding one of the week’s best rounds despite bogeys on both 17 and 18.
Biggest disappointment: McIlroy’s effort to claim the final leg of the career Grand Slam fizzled out in surprising fashion. He had a chance to tie for the lead with a 4-foot eagle putt on the second hole, but he shoved it right to foreshadow a number of misses from close range that would plague him throughout the day. He wasn’t really a factor after a bogey on No. 11, shooting a 2-over 74 to finish six shots off the pace.
Shot of the day: With Fowler in close on the final green, Reed faced a tricky up and down for par on No. 17 but nearly rattled the pin with his putt from across the green, as the ball caught the lip of the hole and stayed within a few feet. After sweeping in what remained, he needed only a par on the final hole to win.
Quote of the day: “It’s almost impossible to put into words.” – Reed