Summerhays finished four rounds at the Muirfield Village Golf Club with a 72 score on Sunday, giving him another solid paycheck at the $6.2 million Memorial. His fourth round was fraught with peril, however.
After a sizzling front nine on which Summerhays birdied three of his first four holes, he struck out on the back nine, hitting four bogeys to ruin what might have been his best golf of the tournament. Summerhays had similar luck in the second and third rounds at the Memorial as well.
In the second round he birdied four of his first nine holes. But then he bogeyed four of his last nine holes--making you wonder if it was actually Groundhog Day in Dublin. If that wasn’t strange enough, consider what happened to Summerhays in the third round of this tournament.
He literally played the course’s front nine the same way, then sputtered to start his afternoon on the back nine. But then, it was like a light had appeared from above, guiding him to three straight birdies on his last five holes of the third round.
Was it destiny? Apparently not, because in the fourth and final round Muirfield Village’s back nine reigned supreme again, felling Summerhays and countless other golfers who tried to conquer it.
If you need more proof, just ask Bubba Watson how his back nine went on Sunday. The dreaded par-5 15th hole had been great for Watson--but not when he needed it most.
“Obviously I hit it pretty hard, but it didn’t hit a tree so I knew it was going to go out of bounds,” Watson said in his post-match press conference. “Trying to be a hero. It’s not a comfortable tee shot for me because I like to cut it, but I was trying to go over the tree with a cut and I just pulled it. I could have sliced my 4-wood off the tee, too, in the other woods.”
Watson fell back on the leader board after that horrific shot on the 15th, giving 22-year-old Hideki Matsuyama of Japan the victory. For Summerhays and other golfers to have three consecutive lights-out days on the front nine and follow it up with three bad days on the back nine seems a bit strange.
But not if you were playing at Muirfield Village this weekend. Summerhays probably wasn’t alone in that sentiment. Mike Weir literally played himself out of contention, hitting well on the front nine before hacking shots on the back end, which resulted in him being cut after the second round of action.