Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Masters Notebook; Garcia Knew Not to Believe Scoreboard

Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Masters Notebook; Garcia Knew Not to Believe Scoreboard

Article excerpt

Byline: Garry Smits

AUGUSTA, GA. | From patrons at the golf course to people following the Masters Tournament through one of the digital platforms, two assumptions arose from an incident involving Sergio Garcia on the 10th hole of the Augusta National Golf Course during Friday's second round.

It was either another rules snafu or Garcia had one of his meltdowns after briefly taking a one-shot lead over Charley Hoffman.

It was neither.

Garcia birdied the ninth hole to get his score to 4-under par for the tournament and a one-shot lead when Hoffman bogeyed No. 11, one group ahead. Garcia then received a triple-bogey 7 at No. 10.

To those saw him play the hole (he made bogey on a three-putt), it was thought he had committed a rule violation that resulted in two penalty strokes.

To those who saw only the score, there was a collective shoulder shrug that he had made a mess of things.

Wrong on both counts. Garcia pulled his drive left and hit a provisional. When he got down the hill, it turned out his first tee shot had hit a tree and ricocheted into the fairway. Garcia, with 276 yards to the hole, was 31 yards short, chipped on and two-putted for his bogey.

Garcia said the walking scorer may have confused him with Shane Lowry, who also hooked his drive in the trees, but had to play his provisional.

"Shane hit two balls to the left, and we were looking for one, couldn't find it, but we found the second one," Garcia said. "We are all dressed [in] light color pants and blue sweaters, so I can see why they might have made the mistake. It was fine."

Garcia said he didn't notice the discrepancy in his score until the 13th hole but wasn't concerned.

"The most important thing is I knew where I stood," he said. "I knew I wasn't 1 under."

The score was corrected shortly after Garcia bogeyed the 13th hole. He went on to shoot 69 and finish in a tie for the lead with Hoffman, Thomas Pieters and Rickie Fowler at 4-under-par 140.

HAGESTAD MAKES MASTERS HISTORY

Stewart Hagestad, a 25-year-old former Southern Cal player, became the first U.S. Mid-Amateur champion to make the cut at the Masters when he shot 73 in the final round to finish at 3-over-par 147 and in a tie for 19th.

Hagestad is three shots ahead of U.S. Amateur champion Curtis Luck of Australia for low amateur.

Hagestad didn't need to birdie the final hole to make the cut, but he did anyway, hitting a 6-iron from 179 yards out to within 3 feet of the hole.

"I'm fired up to go share the moment with my family and my friends," he said. "I'm just excited to go home and hang out with everyone."

Hagestad is a financial analyst living in New York. He won the Mid-Amateur in dramatic fashion last year at the Old Course at Stonewall Links in Elverson, Pa. …

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