Xander Schauffele makes history, sets multiple PGA Championship records at Valhalla

May 16, 2024 | Sports | 0 comments

Xander Schauffele smiles during the first round of the 2024 PGA Championship. | Photo by Patrick Smith/Getty Images

Xander Schauffele, who has come close in majors many times before, got off to a roaring start at the PGA Championship.

Xander Schauffele looked unstoppable at the PGA Championship on Thursday.

He went on an absolute tear, carding a 9-under 62 at Valhalla, the lowest score ever recorded in a PGA Championship. His 62 also matches the best score in major championship history, which three players have shot before.

Funny enough, Schauffele carded a 62 at the U.S. Open a year ago at the Los Angeles Country Club. As such, he becomes the first male golfer to shoot multiple 62s in a major.

His record-setting round comes days after Rory McIlroy raced past him to win the Wells Fargo Championship at Quail Hollow, where Schauffele opened with a three-shot lead after the first round.

Despite another disappointing finish last week, Schauffele believes he is playing the best golf of his career at this point.

“Probably, yeah. I feel there’s spurts, moments in time where you feel like you can control the ball really well; you’re seeing the greens really well; you’re chipping really well,” Schauffele said.

Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images
Xander Schauffele acknowledges the crowd on the 9th green, his last hole of the day.

“But over a prolonged period, it’s tough to upkeep high performance.”

Schauffele has played admirably on numerous occasions before, including major championships. To date, he has recorded a dozen top-10s in majors but has yet to capture that elusive title.

“I think not winning makes you want to win more, as weird as that is,” Schauffele added.

“For me, at least, I react to it, and I want it more and more and more, and it makes me want to work harder and harder and harder. The top feels far away, and I feel like I have a lot of work to do. But just slowly chipping away at it.”

The former San Diego State Aztec began with a par at the easy par-5 10th, as he failed to get up and down for birdie. But things got rolling at the tough par-3 11th, where Schauffele stuck a 6-iron to two feet away. He tapped in for birdie and then made a tough par save at 12.

More birdies followed at the 13th, 15th, and 16th holes, and suddenly, Schauffele found himself atop the leaderboard thanks to a hot putter.

He capped off his front nine with a birdie on the par-5 18th, historically the easiest hole on the course. He turned with a 5-under 31, as his electric play continued on his closing nine holes.

Schauffele made a birdie at the difficult par-4 2nd. He then came close to driving the 351-yard par-4 4th, which led to his seventh birdie of the day.

Two more par-breakers followed at the 5th and 7th holes, and Schauffele walked to the 8th tee on the precipice of history.

Photo by Maddie Meyer/PGA of America via Getty Images
Xander Schauffele hits his tee shot on the 11th hole.

No player has ever shot a 61 in a major, but Schauffele had a chance to become the first to do so. He needed to make one birdie over his final holes to etch his name further into the record books, but he came up a tad short.

Despite that, Schauffele still achieved plenty on Thursday. His 62 not only set a tournament record but also established a new course record at Valhalla.

“I don’t really operate that way,” Schauffele said when asked if he could go lower.

“In terms of wanting to go practice right now, there are always shots you can pick apart or chips that you can pick apart that you felt like you could have hit better, but I’m very content with how I played.”

Schauffele should feel pleased after Thursday but will not feel completely satisfied unless he grabs the Wanamaker Trophy late Sunday evening.

It’s only Thursday and a ton of golf remains, but Schauffele has put himself in a brilliant position to finally break through.

Jack Milko is a golf staff writer for SB Nation’s Playing Through. Be sure to check out @_PlayingThrough for more golf coverage. You can follow him on Twitter @jack_milko as well.

[#item_full_content]Xander Schauffele smiles during the first round of the 2024 PGA Championship. | Photo by Patrick Smith/Getty Images

Xander Schauffele, who has come close in majors many times before, got off to a roaring start at the PGA Championship. Xander Schauffele looked unstoppable at the PGA Championship on Thursday.
He went on an absolute tear, carding a 9-under 62 at Valhalla, the lowest score ever recorded in a PGA Championship. His 62 also matches the best score in major championship history, which three players have shot before.
Funny enough, Schauffele carded a 62 at the U.S. Open a year ago at the Los Angeles Country Club. As such, he becomes the first male golfer to shoot multiple 62s in a major.
His record-setting round comes days after Rory McIlroy raced past him to win the Wells Fargo Championship at Quail Hollow, where Schauffele opened with a three-shot lead after the first round.
Despite another disappointing finish last week, Schauffele believes he is playing the best golf of his career at this point.
“Probably, yeah. I feel there’s spurts, moments in time where you feel like you can control the ball really well; you’re seeing the greens really well; you’re chipping really well,” Schauffele said.

Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images
Xander Schauffele acknowledges the crowd on the 9th green, his last hole of the day.

“But over a prolonged period, it’s tough to upkeep high performance.”
Schauffele has played admirably on numerous occasions before, including major championships. To date, he has recorded a dozen top-10s in majors but has yet to capture that elusive title.
“I think not winning makes you want to win more, as weird as that is,” Schauffele added.
“For me, at least, I react to it, and I want it more and more and more, and it makes me want to work harder and harder and harder. The top feels far away, and I feel like I have a lot of work to do. But just slowly chipping away at it.”
The former San Diego State Aztec began with a par at the easy par-5 10th, as he failed to get up and down for birdie. But things got rolling at the tough par-3 11th, where Schauffele stuck a 6-iron to two feet away. He tapped in for birdie and then made a tough par save at 12.
More birdies followed at the 13th, 15th, and 16th holes, and suddenly, Schauffele found himself atop the leaderboard thanks to a hot putter.
He capped off his front nine with a birdie on the par-5 18th, historically the easiest hole on the course. He turned with a 5-under 31, as his electric play continued on his closing nine holes.
Schauffele made a birdie at the difficult par-4 2nd. He then came close to driving the 351-yard par-4 4th, which led to his seventh birdie of the day.
Two more par-breakers followed at the 5th and 7th holes, and Schauffele walked to the 8th tee on the precipice of history.

Photo by Maddie Meyer/PGA of America via Getty Images
Xander Schauffele hits his tee shot on the 11th hole.

No player has ever shot a 61 in a major, but Schauffele had a chance to become the first to do so. He needed to make one birdie over his final holes to etch his name further into the record books, but he came up a tad short.
Despite that, Schauffele still achieved plenty on Thursday. His 62 not only set a tournament record but also established a new course record at Valhalla.
“I don’t really operate that way,” Schauffele said when asked if he could go lower.
“In terms of wanting to go practice right now, there are always shots you can pick apart or chips that you can pick apart that you felt like you could have hit better, but I’m very content with how I played.”
Schauffele should feel pleased after Thursday but will not feel completely satisfied unless he grabs the Wanamaker Trophy late Sunday evening.
It’s only Thursday and a ton of golf remains, but Schauffele has put himself in a brilliant position to finally break through.
Jack Milko is a golf staff writer for SB Nation’s Playing Through. Be sure to check out @_PlayingThrough for more golf coverage. You can follow him on Twitter @jack_milko as well.SBNation.com – All Posts

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