Nick Watney had played the 18th hole at Doral, generally accepted as one of the toughest finishing holes anywhere, 17 times before today without carding a birdie.
Despite having yanked his 3rd round drive on this hole into the drink, he laced today's drive dead center, stuck his approach to 12 feet and calmly nailed the putt, center cut. His 1st career birdie on 18 at Doral forced Dustin Johnson to hole out from the fairway to force a playoff.
No such luck.
Eight players were within two strokes of the lead today, but Watney was the one that didn't crack, hitting clutch shot after clutch shot. It wasn't just his 18th hole heroics that mattered. Back to back par saves on 14 and 15 of the 25 foot variety held off Johnson. Watney finished at -15 for the tourney with Johnson one behind. Full Field Final Scores.
The young guys blew away the old guard and showed the natural progression of things by placing Watney, Johnson, Francesco Molinari, Matt Kuchar, Luke Donald, Adam Scott, Rickie Fowler, and Hunter Mahan inside the top ten. Rory McIlroy ballooned to a 74 today, good for tenth, tied with Tiger Woods, whose 66 today tied for best round of the day. I'd place more credence in it's significance if he shot it while in contention. Of more concern might be Phil Mickelson's 76, knocking him down to 55th of 66 golfers. Something, or a combination of things, is up with Phil.
I'm starting to smell Masters' grass.