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AUGUSTA, Ga. — Zach Johnson came close but ultimately fell short in his bid to make the weekend at the 86th Masters at Augusta National with a 3-over 75.
It must have been a tough pill to swallow. Johnson made a late bogey on the par-4 17th hole to fall one shot out of the cut line at 5-over par.
Johnson didn’t get off to a strong start in the 18-20 mph sustained winds. Johnson saw every bit of it teeing off just after 11 a.m. and making early bogeys on the first, fifth and sixth holes. A late birdie on the par-4 ninth got Johnson to 2-over 38.
Though Johnson did not talk to the media after his round, his longtime mental coach Morris Pickens gave his initial thoughts.
“He’ll be disappointed for sure,” Pickens said. “He had a lot of good looks on the back 9. So he’ll be upset as any competitor should be. But I know he’ll be professional as always, (but) just disappointed for sure.”
And that disappointment would be understandable. Past champions are treated like kings at Augusta and Johnson had come into this Masters with a flurry of momentum both on and off the course.
He was named Ryder Cup captain in February and has been busy with those obligations. He entered this week with the best finish of his year at last week’s Valero Texas Open. Johnson tied for 13th after a closing 5-under round at TPC San Antonio’s AT&T Oaks Course.
Johnson’s pursuit of a good week at Augusta seemed to get summed up with his putt on the 12th hole Friday. He was about 20 feet above the hole putting back down the green and read the break of the putt perfectly. It trickled, as most do on Augusta National’s greens, and finished one revolution short.
Johnson shrugged his shoulders and could not shake some of the small mistakes that seemed to add up Friday on a course that packed a lot of punch, so the 2007 Masters champion now will see the weekend from outside the ropes.