What are the odds of this!? The chances seem even more astronomical when you consider that there was nary a patron in sight at The American Express PGA Tour tournament during Thursday’s first round when Adam Schenk mean sliced his ball into the rough — or so he thought.
Rather than landing in the tall grass, Schenk redefined what it means for one to golf their ball “into the drink.”
Believe it or not, unlike Shooter McGavin when he had to hit the ball off Frankenstein’s fat foot, Schenk got full relief and didn’t have to hit an explosion shot with the cup still attached. He got to take a free drop on account of a man-made obstruction — if that’s not the exact rule, deal with it — and he made birdie! Well done, Adam. That moved Schenk to four under par on the day, which unfortunately is a full six strokes back of an apparently resurgent Zach Johnson as of this writing.
Ten birdies and zero bogeys for ZJ!? Damn! That’ll help take the pain away from a missed cut last week at the Sony Open. Johnson was just the Ryder Cup captain. What’s he doing lighting it up out here like this against the young guns??
This is the 493rd official start of Zach Johnson's @PGATOUR career.
Incredibly, today is the first time he's opened a tournament with a 29 on his first 9 holes.
Sometimes in professional golf tournaments, though, you need some breaks to go your way in the early going just to keep yourself within striking distance. Lord knows where Schenk’s ball would’ve gone if not for one man’s cocktail cup. Could’ve been a big number that derailed his round. You never know.
Oh sh*t. Score update: Just as I go to submit this, Schenk double bogeys the par-3 17th. Now at two under, eight back of ZJ.
Let’s end this on a high note.
I’m a pretty big golf guy but NGL, if you’d told me before I broke ground on this story that Adam Schenk is the 48th-ranked player in the world, I would not have believed you. I straight-up did not know who this guy was until now. Talk about a way to boost your profile and raise awareness for your apparent brand of nearly-elite golf. Jarring your bad shot into the most unlikely of places is a great place to start.
No shade, by the way! Props to Schenk for ascending this high in the game of golf at age 31 without a PGA Tour victory to his name. That’s admirable consistency. If it isn’t this week, he’s bound to break through with that first win sometime in 2024. It’s just gotta be tough to be a professional golfer with all the obvious “SHANK!” puns affiliated with your surname. I’ve never been more confident in Schenk’s mental fortitude. Gotta hammer him to win at one of these events.