It was a masterful finish for Bubba Watson.
The 35-year-old took his second green jacket in three years Sunday afternoon as he shot a final-round 69 to win the Masters Tournament at eight-under par on the weekend.
Watson spoke about the final round and eventual win at Augusta National, via the Los Angeles Times:
I don’t remember the last few holes, I just remember hanging on and thinking "make pars, make pars." The first one for me, it’s almost like I lucked into it. After giving it away last year, I wanted it back. I told Adam we could just swap it back and forth every year. This one was a lot of hard work and dedication.
While Watson spent the evening in jubilation after his second win at Augusta, 20-year-old Jordan Spieth was forced to settle for a second-place finish. The Dallas, Texas native shot a 72 on the final day, good enough to finish tied with Jonas Blixt for runner-up to Watson.
Here's a look at the final leaderboard from the Masters and analysis of the outcome from Augusta National.
Final Leaderboard Review
Talk about a turn of the tide.
Watson appeared to be cruising heading into the weekend slate, but struggles Saturday allowed the rest of the pack to catch up. The left-hander carded five bogeys as Spieth was tied with him for the lead coming into Sunday's action.
Bubba Watson (-8) wins the 2014 Masters Tournament to collect his 2nd green jacket in 3 years! pic.twitter.com/ECtan5tdrz— Bleacher Report (@BleacherReport) April 13, 2014
But at the end of the tournament, Watson came out on top as he was able to nail down a huge three-under final round.
Winning his second Masters in 2014 was not only special for current golfers but also in a historical sense. With Watson only participating in six total Masters, he put his name along with the likes of Arnold Palmer, as the Atlanta Journal-Constitution reports:
The win also puts Watson in a special category, as ESPN Stats & Info points out:
Bubba Watson joins Phil Mickelson as the only lefty golfers with multiple major championships— ESPN Stats & Info (@ESPNStatsInfo) April 13, 2014
It was a great coming out party for Spieth at the Masters, but he came up just short against Watson as he was unable to keep up in the final round.
His even round wasn't enough to overtake Watson, but it did put him in an exclusive group, as ESPN Stats & Info notes:
Spieth: youngest player to finish 2nd or better at Masters, youngest to finish 2nd at ANY major since Sergio Garcia, 1999 PGA Championship— ESPN Stats & Info (@ESPNStatsInfo) April 14, 2014
Spieth might not have come out on top, but he spoke about the chance to play alongside Watson in the final pairing as he won the green jacket:
Dream come true competing at Augusta! Deserving champion in @bubbawatson incredibly played. Stinging badly but it's just fuel going forward!— Jordan Spieth (@JordanSpieth) April 13, 2014
As for the others in the top five, names like Blixt, Miguel Angel Jimenez and Matt Kuchar also made their presence felt Sunday afternoon. Blixt, like Spieth, was also playing in his first Masters as the 29-year-old pulled off a tie for second.
In the exact opposite category, the 50-year-old Jimenez surged through the field with a 66 and clinched a spot in the top five. CBS Sports' Eye on Golf praised the experienced player:
Miguel Angel Jimenez is done... Great tournament as he finishes 4-under and is looking at a top 7 finish.— Eye on Golf (@EyeOnGolf) April 13, 2014
Though they weren't able to claim the win, each of the aforementioned players came away with deep pockets, as Darren Rovell of ESPN mentions:
Top 5 Masters payouts: Bubba $1.62M, Blixt & Spieth $792K each, Jimenez $432K, Fowler & Kuchar $342K each.— darren rovell (@darrenrovell) April 13, 2014
With young players like Spieth now making a name for themselves and Rickie Fowler tying for fifth, a new movement appears to be coming. But with Jimenez and Watson proving the veteran guard still holds up in 2014, the rest of the season should be intriguing as players of all ages look to overtake Watson.
Following the huge win, Watson now has another chance to claim a major when the U.S. Open kicks off at Pinehurst Resort in Pinehurst, N.C. June 12. Until that point, Watson can once again bask in the glory of holding onto the green jacket for a full year.