Rodgers Perseveres, Despite The Record

Southampton, New York | It was a team full of big personalities and résumés, the 2011 Walker Cup team that fell to Great Britain and Ireland at Royal Aberdeen in Scotland. There was Patrick Cantlay, who had spent the summer traveling the PGA Tour circus, making cuts and headlines. He was low amateur at the U.S. Open that summer, and he shot 60 one day in a PGA Tour event. There was Peter Uihlein, who went 4-0-0 in the 2009 Walker Cup at Merion. There was Nathan Smith, the three-time U.S. Mid-Amateur champion. And Jordan Spieth, the two-time U.S. Junior champion who turned heads by contending on national television in a PGA Tour event in his hometown of Dallas. And there were Harris English and Russell Henley, both of whom had won as amateurs that year on the then-Nationwide Tour. It was an accomplished and confident bunch, thought to perhaps be the strongest American Walker Cup team ever assembled. And it included a young, fresh-faced Patrick Rodgers, an Indiana native who arrived in Scotland as the youngest member of the team, a shy kid with arguably the thinnest résumé. Rodgers was not, however, awed in the least. He began the year well off the radar screen, but he set aside junior golf to focus on the elite amateur game, with the goal of making the team. He had a strong spring season, in and out of school competition, and when he won the Porter Cup, his spot had been earned.
Rodgers would go 0-2-1 in the match won by GB&I in a shocker, 14-12. Like most of the U.S. team, he struggled with the winds of Aberdeen. While thrilled with the learning experience, Rodgers was very disappointed with the outcome and determined to get another shot at it.


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