SPORTS

US OPEN '15: Key moments in more than a century of US Open golf championships

A look at some of the anniversaries at the US Open this year:

100 years ago (1915): A four-time U.S. Amateur champion, Jerome Travers won his only U.S. Open title with a 73-76 final day to hold off Tom McNamara by one shot at Baltusrol. It was the second time in three years an amateur had won the U.S. Open. Walter Hagen was the defending champion and finished nine shots behind. A short time after his victory, Travers announced his retirement from competition and never played another U.S. Open. Baltusrol was never the same, either. Three years later, it was torn up by course architect A.W. Tillinghast, who then created what is now the Upper and Lower courses.

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75 years ago (1940): Seven of the top eight players on the leaderboard at Canterbury are enshrined in the World Golf Hall of Fame. The exception was the winner, Lawson Little, who captured his only major in the 1940 U.S. Open by beating Gene Sarazen in a playoff. Three players tied at 287. The third was Porky Oliver, who was disqualified for starting his round before the posted time in an effort to beat the storms. Little shot 70 in the playoff to win by three over Sarazen. The other players behind them — Horton Smith, Craig Wood, Ralph Guldahl, Ben Hogan, Lloyd Mangrum and Byron Nelson.

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50 years ago (1965): Gary Player joined Gene Sarazen (1935) and Ben Hogan (1953) as the only players to capture the career Grand Slam. The 29-year-old South African nearly let it get away from him at Bellerive Country Club, a young course outside St. Louis. Player had a three-shot lead with three holes to play until a double bogey on the 16th hole, while Kel Nagle ahead of him made birdie on the 17th. They tied at 282 and faced a Monday playoff (this was the first U.S. Open played over four days). Player built a big lead early and shot 71 for a three-shot victory over the Australian. Jack Nicklaus would join Player with the Grand Slam a year later by winning the British Open.

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25 years ago (1990): Hale Irwin was given a special exemption to the U.S. Open at Medinah. It had been five years since his last PGA Tour win and 11 years since he won his second U.S. Open title at Inverness. The 45-year-old Irwin became the oldest U.S. Open champion in history, and it was dramatic. Irwin made a 45-foot putt on the final hole and ran around the green high-fiving the gallery. That gave him a 67 and put him into a playoff against Mike Donald. They each shot 74 in the playoff, and Irwin won with a par on the first sudden-death hole. Curtis Strange was two shots behind going into the last round in his bid for a third straight U.S. Open. He closed with a 75 and tied for 21st.

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20 years ago (1995): Corey Pavin shed his label as the best to have never won a major at Shinnecock Hills. Greg Norman and Tom Lehman were tied for the lead going into the final round. Norman closed with a 73. Lehman, the first of four straight U.S. Opens playing in the final group, shot a 74. Pavin effectively wrapped it up with a 4-wood to the tough 18th that bounded onto the green to about 5 feet. He missed the birdie putt but still shot 68 and won by two. Phil Mickelson played the par-5 16th hole in 6 over for the week and finished four shots behind.

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10 years ago (2005): Michael Campbell got into the U.S. Open through the first sectional qualifier held in Europe. Then, he answered every challenge from Tiger Woods on the back nine to win at Pinehurst No. 2. Campbell finally put away Woods with a 20-foot birdie putt on the 17th hole. He closed with a 1-under 69 and finished at even-par 280. The final round also was marked by failure. Retief Goosen had a three-shot lead going into the final round and shot 81. He was chased by Jason Gore, who shot an 84, and by Olin Browne, who closed with an 80. It was the second straight year in the U.S. Open that a player in the final group shot 80 or higher.