Protesters on course delay Travelers Championship. Scottie Scheffler waits on 18th hole

Climate change protestors are ushered off the 18th green by police officers during the final round of the Travelers Championship at TPC River Highlands on June 23, 2024 in Cromwell, Connecticut.
Climate change protestors are ushered off the 18th green by police officers during the final round of the Travelers Championship at TPC River Highlands on June 23, 2024 in Cromwell, Connecticut.

Needing a 10-foot birdie putt on the 18th hole of the Travelers Championship to tie Scottie Scheffler for the overall lead, Tom Kim was standing over his ball, reading the line when protestors disrupted play, throwing flares and damaging the green at TPC River Highlands with paint.

The CBS broadcast of the tournament captured the chaotic scene, as police responded quickly to apprehend the protestors. Per CBS, five protestors were taken away. Grounds crew at the tournament tended to the green, resulting in a stoppage of play of several minutes.

Both Kim and Scheffler appeared to cycle through visible frustration and disbelief, at times sharing a laugh to seemingly try to defuse the tension of the moment. At the time, Scheffler was facing a birdie putt from the fringe of the green, which he missed, leaving the door open for Kim to tie the tournament and send it to a playoff.

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After several minutes to clear the scene, allowing the players to regroup, Kim calmly drained the putt — with a splotch of red paint still on the green not far from his line — to tie Scheffler at 22-under par. Kim shouted and pumped his fists several times, as the crowd roared in approval.

A group called Extinction Rebellion said on social media that it staged the disruption to protest climate change; four of the apprehended protestors wore shirts that read "NO GOLF ON A DEAD PLANET."

More: 'I thought you were going to ask about golf.' What Scottie Scheffler said about his arrest

"Golf has its environmental problems, but we can’t even have that discussion until we acknowledge the fundamental realities,” Extinction Rebellion spokesperson Miles Grant said in a statement posted to the group’s website. “We are all watching the climate catastrophe unfold at warp speed. Our relatively mild disruption of the Travelers Championship calls attention to nature’s much more severe and long-lasting disruptions.”

Scheffler would go on to win the tournament after he made par on the first playoff hole, topping Kim's bogey.

This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Travelers Championships, Scottie Scheffler delayed by protesters

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