A foul shot didn’t seem to bother him, nearly losing his ball on the 54th hole was like water off a duck’s back; even fighting with his jacket around the Augusta National track on lap three seemed manageable, despite how uncomfortable it looked in the heady wind.
But with 18 holes between him and his first big win and a famous green jacket, the pressure to be the Masters leader began to weigh.
Even with a three-shot lead on the final day, a Saturday night supper nafu knocked Scheffer off his feet.
“We (Scheffler and his wife, Meredith) went to get food. I spilled my dinner in the car on the way home, and it was extremely frustrating,” a smiling Scheffler told media.
“You can tell Meredith is still laughing at me. She thought it was the funniest thing ever; I didn’t think it was that funny then.”
While he describes that night as “fine,” the morning after was “a whole different story.”
“I cried like a baby this morning. I was so stressed out,” the 25-year-old explained. “I didn’t know what to do.
“I sat there and told Meredith, ‘I don’t think I’m ready for this. I’m not ready, I don’t feel like I’m ready for this kind of thing,’ and I just felt overwhelmed. She said to me : ‘Who are you to say you’re not ready yet?’ Gosh, it’s been a long morning.”
It’s been a transformative few months for the American.
In February, Scheffler did not have a PGA Tour win to his name. Now he is Masters champion and number 1 in the world.
He came to the April Masters as one of the favorites after a string of three wins in five tournament starts catapulted him from PGA Tour journeyman to superstar.
Scheffler brought that form to Augusta National and managed to stay calm under considerable pressure.
As others collapsed around him, Scheffler maintained an even keel, despite his “tummy aching for two days,” so the pressure and sense of anticipation grew.
Scheffler recalls that when he played in college and participated in a couple of US Opens, he had “indigestion like the week and a half before” and took pills to settle his stomach.
When asked afterwards why he was so nervous before playing, Scheffler explained that the prestige of the tournament played a part.
“I dreamed of having a chance to play in this golf tournament. I burst into tears when I first received my invitation in the mail,” he said. “We were lucky enough to play here in college and I love this place.
“I love this golf course. If you choose a golf tournament to win, this would be the tournament I would like to win. You don’t know how many chances you will get.
“And so if I have a chance I think I had a five-shot lead on Friday and then a three-shot lead on Sunday, I don’t know if you’ll get better chances than that. You don’t want to waste them.
“The human condition is to make things bigger than they really are. And in years to come I’d say people might not remember me as a champion, and that’s fine. But right now you think it’s a much bigger deal than it really is.”
But as has often been the case for Scheffler, he found “calm” on the track.
“I think the hardest things are off the golf course. When I’m there and once we’re in the round, pretty much after I parry the first hole, I felt good.”
Scheffler, who battled severe weather conditions during the opening three rounds, was able to build a significant lead, holding a three-shot lead over Australian Cameron Smith heading into Sunday.
After a few nervous opening holes, during which Smith narrowed the lead to just one, Scheffler confirmed his dominance, starting with a delightful chip-in on the third hole for a birdie.
While others faltered and slipped, Scheffler never looked startled and slowly tightened his grip on his debut major.
“It sure was fun building a lead. Nothing is safe out there on the back nine on this golf course.
“I’ve heard all the things everyone says, it doesn’t start until 9 on Sunday, anything can happen, don’t get in the water at 12, all that sort of thing. I just blocked most of it and tried to run and hitting good golf shots.”
It wasn’t until Sunday’s 18th green, with his lead unassailable and the green jacket adjusted for his mates, that Scheffler was able to relax.
“I didn’t break my concentration until we got to the green at 18. Once we got to the green, I thought, ‘Okay, I’m going to enjoy this.'”
With just a short par putt to etch his name in the history book, Scheffler missed by the narrowest margin, leaving him with another short putt to round it out.
To the amazement of everyone watching — and Scheffler himself — his putt hit the rim of the cup before spinning away.
“It’s hard to believe what you’ve just seen,” said Sky Sports commentator Ewen Murray.
Scheffler was finally able to roll home that winning putt as the crowd erupted in celebration as the last Masters champion was crowned.
Scheffler shared emotional moments with wife Meredith and father Scott as he left the green shortly before trying on his latest piece of clothing – the green jacket given to the winner of the Masters.
“The reason I play golf is because I try to glorify God and everything He’s done in my life. So to me, my identity isn’t a golf score,” Scheffler added.
“As Meredith told me this morning, ‘If you win this golf tournament today, if you lose this 10-stroke golf tournament, if you never win another golf tournament,’ she says, ‘I’ll still love you, you’ll be the same person , Jesus loves you and nothing changes.’
“All I’m trying to do is glorify God and that’s why I’m here…it’s not about a golf score.”