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Is Pinehurst ‘borderline’? Scottie Scheffler had the perfect answer

Scottie Scheffler gave Pinehurst insight after his third round at the US Open.

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If you were asked to say something nice about Scottie Scheffler, you wouldn’t have a very hard time.

You might start with his golf game, which has already produced five PGA Tour wins this season. You can admire his comeback win at the Players Championship or his dream win at the Masters. You can admire his instrumental playing, which has been good for many years. Or you might be surprised by his placement, which has gotten much better in recent months, opening up all of the above.

You can tell that Scheffler seems like a strict family man, the kind of guy who was ready to leave the Masters when the call came from his pregnant wife Meredith. Even if you thought a certain story was overblown, you can point out that a golfer and his wife who hit their local pub nine months pregnant to celebrate a big win seem to have done the right thing.

You can credit Scheffler for the way he handled one of the strangest sports incidents in recent memory, his arrest at the hands of the Louisville Police Department while preparing for his second round of the PGA Championship. Scheffler handled things with respect off the course and responded with excellent performances on the course – including a top ten that week, a runner-up finish the next week and a victory at last week’s Memorial.

But if that somehow isn’t enough, check out Scheffler’s handling of this week’s US Open. You’ve been a bit off from the start; he was eliminated on Thursday and Friday by playing with partners Rory McIlroy and Xander Schauffele and battled on Friday to reach the top. Scheffler was clearly frustrated on the course, especially on the greens, where he ranked near the bottom of the field. But when he’s done? He caught himself. That was true after Friday’s 74 and twice as true after Saturday’s 71, a round that left him out of contention.

That’s a long way of presenting the idea that Scottie Scheffler had some interesting things to say after his round on Saturday and give us a useful overview of how Pinehurst played this week.

Asked about the details of Pinehurst No. 2 how it will play out throughout the day, Scheffler was clear that things are difficult.

“It’s definitely tricky pin locations,” he said. “It will be very strong. The sun is out. The wind blows enough that the vegetation will really dry out. I have definitely seen that from the ground up. They are really strong. The way these games are, it will be a big challenge this afternoon.”

The reporter followed up: What holes do you find on the border, dice?

Scheffler grinned.

“Do you really want to write about this?”

That word “borderline” echoes the sentiments expressed by defending champion Wyndham Clark earlier in the week. It is also a chargeable name when it comes to the competition. Scheffler knows that.

“I think that when it comes to the US Open, ‘frontier’ is, like, the first word,” he said. “No matter what I think, he understands exactly where he is trying to hit the ball. That’s when I start not hitting the ball in the places you’re supposed to hit the ball, that’s when things get difficult.”

The course proved more difficult as the day progressed, with competitors stripping the greens, ping-ponging chips back and forth and making double and triple bogeys on key spots. But was it right? Scheffler cited the worst hole of his career, the par-5 5th, where he had a tough time on Friday, and described the course using that hole.

“I’m thinking about No. 5. I did it twice yesterday,” he said. “Hit it in the dirt, bad break, can’t get it up on the green. Next, there is not enough sand under the ball. You can blame it on luck or anything. I knew not to hit the ball. I knew where to hit it and where not to hit it. If you hit the ball in the middle of the fairway, in the middle of the green, you can make 18 pars.

“Now, the criminals given to them will be injured here more than next week at Travelers. That’s just the nature of the golf course, the nature of the tournament. He’s going to be hurt more here with a bad shot than he was last week at the Memorial.

“That’s the US Open.”

The feeling is similar to that of Rory McIlroy, who said he was trying to accept the challenge of setting up the US Open. He described one shot from 151 yards that he attempted to fly 146 yards.

“I can’t put it at 144, because it won’t go up there,” he said. “And I can’t put it down 148, because it’s going to go behind the green.”

That is the case this week. Scheffler summed it up, concluding the article.

“The game of golf is a mental torture chamber sometimes, especially the US Open,” he said.

Scheffler was also self-absorbed.

“I would not use myself as a result of good. You are so beautiful right now,” she said. But he was also clear: Life is good. His whole day?

“Go to the gym in the afternoon, pack, lift my feet all day, hang out with my boyfriend and my wife,” he said. “I will come tomorrow morning ready to play. Like I said, I’m going to the gym today, get up early, get ready to go out and study, see if I can study.”

See if I can read. He is very good at that.

Add it to the list.

Dylan Dethier

Dylan Dethier Editor

Dylan Dethier is a senior writer for GOLF Magazine/ The young man originally from Williamstown, Mass. joined GOLF in 2017 after two years struggling on the small tour. Dethier is a graduate of Williams College, where he majored in English, and is the author of 18 in Americadescribing the year he spent at age 18 living in his car and playing golf in every state.

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