June 16, 2008

AND NOT THE LAST VICTIM:

A painful victory for Tiger Woods in U.S. Open playoff (The Associated Press, June 16, 2008)

With a throbbing knee and a pounding heart, Tiger Woods made one last improbable escape and won the U.S. Open in a 19-hole playoff over Rocco Mediate on Monday, his 14th career major and maybe the most amazing of them all.

One shot behind on the 18th hole after a collapse no one saw coming, Woods birdied the 18th hole to force sudden death at Torrey Pines against a 45-year-old with a creaky back who simply wouldn't go away.

But that one extra hole was enough to doom Mediate, trying to become the oldest U.S. Open champion at 45 years, 6 months.

He put his tee shot in the bunker at No. 7, knocked his approach off a cart path and against the bleachers, chipped some 18 feet past the hole and missed the par putt.

On the verge of one of golf's greatest upsets, Mediate instead became another victim.

Posted by Orrin Judd at June 16, 2008 4:43 PM
Comments

Remarkable stuff today. Rocco's tee shot at 3, his pars on 11 and 12 (what a second on the 12th!), and his play at 13-15 were terrific.

Almost any other player (including Phil, who played terrribly except for a few phlop shots from the spinach) would have wilted completely and lost by 5 or 6. What surprised me was Ernie, missing 5 or 6 short putts in a row on Sunday, before he blew up totally on 15. Had he gone to even or minus 1 before the 18th, he could have made an easy birdie there. Kind of like what happened to him last year at Southern Hills.

Of course, a birdie on 18 yesterday or today and Rocco wins outright. He'll remember those.

Posted by: jim hamlen at June 16, 2008 9:55 PM
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