Masters ’23: 2nd round resumes after storms fell trees

Augusta, Georgia –

The second round of the Masters resumed at Augusta National on Saturday, but there was little evidence that play was interrupted when three towering pine trees fell near patrons during the previous day’s storm.

A fallen pine crushed some chairs that patrons were sitting on, but no one was hurt. Three separate 10 x 10 foot areas near the 16th green and hes 17th tee were roped off on Saturday, leaving some pieces of wood from where workers quickly cut them out. . Two of them were covered with green gravel and one with pine straw.

Sergio Garcia teed off in 17th place after the second round on Saturday. The 2017 champion scratched his head at his patrons as he started walking towards his shot to see where the trees once stood. Some of the workers around were still discussing what had happened.

1987 champion Larry Mize said, “I was standing on the right side near No. 17, and I was lining up putts right by the right-back bunker at No. 16.” I looked around and saw trees.

“I’m thinking, ‘Oh my God, everybody get out of there,'” Mize said. “Fortunately, no one was hurt.”

Athletes who qualified on Saturday will have to endure even more severe weather in the third round. Cold rain is expected to continue throughout the day, with more storms likely to pass through eastern Georgia. According to the weather forecast, Sunday will be drier.

Fred Couples, 63, broke Bernhard Langer’s record as the oldest player to play at the Masters by finishing Saturday’s second round with an over. “This afternoon he’s 18 Does he look excited to play a hole? No, I’m a wimp. An old wimp. But I’m excited to play. .”

The course was cleared once in 21 minutes by an early band of Friday’s storm. At 4:22pm, another storm hit, causing the air horns to go off again, forcing patrons to evacuate and players and officials to seek shelter.

Play for the day was suspended after 90 minutes.

Just before the second horn sounded, three giant pine trees slowly fell near the 17th tee, scattering about 50 people under them. Nearby on his 16th green, Harrison Crowe began to recoil in surprise when he saw a tree fall, but on the 15th green Garcia stopped and watched in slow motion what was happening.

“We were climbing the fairway at the 15th. We thought it was the scoreboard or the grandstand,” he said. “We were hoping it wasn’t going to hit anyone.”

The uprooted pines fell slowly, two of them supporting the third, providing time for the patrons below to get out of the way. But it was a close call with several crushed chairs under a fallen tree.

“I was talking to my friend next door and suddenly I heard something,” said Katie Waits, who was in the second round from Charleston, South Carolina. There were trees, and suddenly we saw them falling, and it was like ants, they seemed to be scattered from below, like ants.3 All the books fell at the same time, holding my friend’s hand and saying, “Are you all right?” “

Waites said he saw a woman standing between two fallen trees and heard a man crawl out from under some of his limbs. He called it an “absolute miracle” that no one was injured.

In a statement, Augusta National said, “The safety and well-being of everyone participating in the Masters tournament is always our top priority. We will continue to monitor the weather closely today and throughout the tournament.”


AP Sports writers Doug Ferguson and Paul Newbery contributed to this report.

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