TULSA, Okla. — ESPN anchor Sage Steele issued a statement on Saturday afternoon thanking fans and medical personnel following an on-course accident on Thursday at the PGA Championship.
During first-round play, an errant drive from Jon Rahm struck her in the face. Geoff Shackelford of The Quadrilateral reported that an eyewitness “saw her on the ground, holding her nose, mouth or chin area” and that her hands were “covered in blood.”
“I was standing behind the tee when Rahm hit a hard hook into the left trees,” Shackelford wrote. “He immediately yelled ‘Fore Left!’ and aggressively waved his arm pointing left,” he wrote. “The impact must have been brutal: Rahm’s tee shot ended up in the center of the fairway.”
There were no official accounts of the incident issued at Southern Hills by the PGA or ESPN, but The New York Post reported that Steele, 49, was at the tournament working for ESPN’s “SportsCenter” and done with work for the day, and watching golf from the gallery as a spectator when she was struck.
“I just want to thank everyone for your concerns and prayers during the last couple of days,” Steele said in her statement. “From the doctors, nurses and EMTs at Saint Francis Hospital in Tulsa, to my doctor and dentist here in Connecticut, and my co-workers at ESPN, I am so grateful. With the help of my team, I hope to recover quickly for my three kids, and get back to work. Looking forward to seeing everyone again soon.”
Steele wasn’t the only person struck by an errant shot during the early rounds at the PGA Championship. On Friday, golfer Aaron Wise was hit by a drive from Cameron Smith and dropped to his knees briefly before continuing his round. Wise was standing off the 7th fairway, Smith was hitting from the adjacent 2nd tee.
Wise was examined by medical personnel after the round but continued playing on Saturday.