Jordan Spieth is playing in his second Masters golf tournament. Perhaps, someone should have told him.
The New York Times is reporting that Spieth, 21, is currently holding a five-shot lead over Charley Hoffman with a two-day score of 14-under-par 130. Spieth’s efforts have broken Raymond Floyd’s 36-year Augusta record of 13-under-par set in 1976. Spieth’s play is now tied for a best two-round score in a major tournament.
Spieth has benefited from a combination of good, aggressive play and luck. One of Spieth’s drives was heading for a densely wooded area until it bounced off a branch and back into the fairway. One of Spieth’s putts seemingly changed its off-course trajectory and went directly into the hole. And, Spieth hit a rescue shot from a rough onto a green out of his sight, hitting the flag pole and stopping two feet from the hole.
Asked how he was able to shoot a 64 on Thursday and a 66 on Friday, Spieth stated matter-of-factly, “It was less windy today.”
Spieth seems to like playing golf in Augusta. Last year, at his first Masters, he shared the lead at 54 holes with Bubba Watson. Watson surged ahead to win, while Spieth finished in a second-place tie with Jonas Blixt. Spieth is now focused.
“The last couple days, it doesn’t mean anything, unless I can close it out,” Spieth said. “I don’t want this to go in as the 36-hole best record, but as somebody who didn’t win.”
ABC News is reporting that Spieth has his sights on the prize.
“I got standing ovations walking to multiple greens,” Spieth said. “I mean, that’s something you can only dream about. It’s Friday, too. I’d like to have the same thing happening on Sunday. Got a lot of work to do before that happens.”
Spieth’s play is also serving to shadow the return of Tiger Woods, who is currently shooting a two-under-par 142 for the first two rounds. Woods is playing his first major tournament since having back surgery 13 months ago. This is his first tournament overall in two months.
Second-place Hoffman tried keeping pace with Spieth with three birdies on the last nine holes, until the last hole, which Hoffman bogeyed for a second-round 68. His two-round score of 135 would have been enough to lead the last three Masters tournaments, but that doesn’t concern Hoffman.
“It’s this year. It’s not any other year,” he said. “I’m just playing golf and I’ve only played 36 holes. And we’ve got a lot of golf left.”
Round three of the Masters is Saturday, April 11.
[Image courtesy of Brian Snyder/Reuters]