Jordan Spieth said he did Rickie Fowler no favors Sunday.
Fowler said he did himself no favors with his chipping and putting.
After starting Sunday one stroke off the lead at 5-under, the orange-clad Fowler was unable to put much pressure on leaders Justin Rose and eventual champion Sergio Garcia, ballooning to 4-over 76 and dropping to a tie for 11th with a 1-under total.
Spieth, playing in Fowler’s pairing, shot 75 and was part of the five-way tie for 11th.
Spieth, the 2015 Masters champion, had to birdie three of his last four holes to salvage Sunday’s 3-over effort, while Fowler was still lurking at 5-under for the tournament at No. 10.
“Yeah, I feel bad I went so downhill while Rickie was still in there, because it is tough when you don’t see a ball go in the hole,” Spieth said. “And when I was out of it, I was his biggest cheerleader, just being really good friends with Rickie. … I felt like if I was able to hang in there and we would be able to feed off each other and push through like Sergio and Justin were able to do.”
The 28-year-old Fowler was still at 5-under for the tournament after 10 holes Sunday. He didn’t see his bid for a first green jacket disappear until back-to-back bogeys at Nos. 11 and 12, and he closed with three consecutive bogeys.
“I played nicely on the front,” Fowler said. “Really it was my chipping and putting that kind of went sideways on me. Every time I chipped it close I missed the putt, or I didn’t chip it close enough and I’d still miss the putt. So when you aren’t able to get the ball up and down out here, or make those key five- to 10-footers, this is what happens.”
Fowler was impressive leading up to Sunday, surviving the brutal, windy and chilly conditions over the opening two days and shooting the low round Friday of 67.
“It would have been nice to swing a little better, like I have been,” Fowler said of Sunday’s effort. “But the swing was a little off. We had fought through it great through the week in the wind and getting a whole lot out of Saturday’s round making sure we stayed in the golf tournament. But I just didn’t get the ball up and down or make the putts I needed to make. If I make a couple of putts, it’s completely different.”
Fowler took 30 putts Sunday, seven more than he did Friday.
Fowler, the No. 8-ranked player in the world, and said he and Jordan would have loved to have inspired the patrons into their legendary Sunday roars.
“The galleries here are always great,” Fowler said. “It’s a special place. Yeah, it would have been nice if Jordan and myself could have given them a reason to get a little louder. But unfortunately we didn’t do a lot to help that.”