Jordan Spieth at Players Championship 2015: Friday Leaderboard Score, Reaction

Adam Wells@adamwells1985Featured ColumnistMay 8, 2015

PONTE VEDRA BEACH, FL - MAY 08:  Jordan Spieth plays his shot from the 11th tee during round two of THE PLAYERS Championship at the TPC Sawgrass Stadium course on May 8, 2015 in Ponte Vedra Beach, Florida.  (Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images)
Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images

Jordan Spieth's run at the 2015 Players Championship lasted a total of two days. The 21-year-old missed the cut despite a solid effort on Friday in which he shot an even-par 72, but a 75 in the first round proved to be too much for him to overcome.  

It was apparent over the course of both days that Spieth wasn't in a rhythm hitting the ball. He never found a way to carry momentum from one hole to the next, even when it seemed like things would be taking a turn. 

For instance, Spieth was even par after 10 holes, got a birdie on the par-five 11th hole and got within two shots of the cut line. His next two holes were all played at par, which isn't bad but not good enough when you have to make up three shots. It didn't help that he would go on to bogey the 14th hole.  

Per Michael Whitmer of The Boston Globe, Spieth's result at this year's Players Championship is a stark contrast to the way he debuted here in 2014:

Michael Whitmer @MichaelTWhitmer

Jordan Spieth (75-72) will miss the cut, one year after a T4 in his Players debut.

Here's Spieth's scorecard for Friday's second round at the TPC Sawgrass:

Jordan Spieth at 2015 Players Championship Round 2
Source: PGA Tour

Here's the full leaderboard for the Players Championship:

On the heels of his opening-round 75, Spieth was aware of what the problem was and areas to correct. He told reporters that the entire week has been a struggle for him, via Steve DiMeglio of USA Today:

I just couldn't find anything, really since I have gotten here on Monday. I mentioned it in the press conference that I was struggling hitting the ball this week; that I was looking for something in my alignment. I just didn't quite trust it today until I was already too far behind the 8-ball. Just a really, really poor day.

Sometimes the course isn't going to work with you, or it was just a bad week for one of the best players on tour. It happens to everyone from time to time, but Spieth's problems weren't pronounced. He found something that worked okay on Friday, it just wasn't enough to bring him over the cut line. 

The final nail in Spieth's coffin came on the 14th hole, as Golf Week's Adam Schupak speculated at the time:

Adam Schupak @AdamSchupak

That bogey for @JordanSpieth at 14 may have been the nail in the coffin for the cut. +3. Will need to finish up strong or be trunk slamming.

He was at two-over to that point and two good holes from staying alive, but a bogey pushed him back to three shots off the cut line with four holes to play. 

Per Justin Ray of the Golf Channel, Spieth becomes the first player since 2004 to miss the cut at the Players Championship the same year he won the Masters:

Justin Ray @JustinRayGC

Jordan Spieth (+2) currently 2 off cut line. Last reigning Masters champ to miss cut in Players: Mike Weir in 2004.

After Spieth's superhuman effort at the Masters, he was supposed to go on one of those special runs like Rory McIlroy last year when he won three events in a four week span (British Open, Bridgestone Invitational, PGA Championship). 

Instead, golf is reminding Spieth and everyone else that it's a humbling game. He shot a 74 in the first round of the RBC Heritage, but rebounded the next day with a 62. This time around, things weren't working in his favor. 

Brian Wacker of PGATour.com noted Spieth was playing like the basketball equivalent of Michael Jordan with the Washington Wizards:

Brian Wacker @brianwacker1

Not very Jordan-esque today. Maybe Wizards Jordan. So far left on 10 he's on the other side of the bunker and creek.

If there is an optimistic way for Spieth to look at things, Golf Week's David Dusek pointed out a lot of big names won't be around for the weekend:

David Dusek @Golfweek_Dusek

Lots of big names trunk slammin' this evening: Phil, Spieth, Rose, Westy, Walker, Sneds ... but Tiger will play the w'end. #Golfweek

That's not going to provide any comfort for the Texas native, though he's not in uncharted territory. Spieth missed the cut at the Farmers Insurance Open in February, which prompted him to go on a great run of success prior to the Players Championship, per ESPN's Bob Harig:

Bob Harig @BobHarig

Jordan Spieth is headed toward a missed cut. since last one at Phoenix he's had 6 top-10s, 2 wins, 2 seconds

The sky isn't falling for Spieth because of one missed cut in a prestigious event. It's easy to get caught up in what happened at Augusta and expect more of that each week, but this is still a 21-year-old young man who is going to have growing pains before he becomes the superstar everyone believes him to be. 

For perspective on young Spieth is and what he's already achieved, McIlroy was 21 when he had that meltdown in the final round of the 2011 Masters. Things have worked out well for him ever since that fateful day in April.

Spieth will be fine despite this blip on the radar.  


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