Also Known As: Played as Marlene Bauer until getting married, then as Marlene Bauer Hagge for a time.
LPGA Championship: 1956
Awards and Honors:
LPGA money leader, 1956
Associated Press Female Athlete of the Year, 1949
Won 1952 Sarasota Open two weeks prior to her 18th birthday, making her the youngest winner in LPGA Tour history.
In 1971, Hagge set an LPGA Tour 9-hole scoring record of 29 at the Lem Immke Buick Open. The record stood for 13 years.
She played competitively on the LPGA Tour in each of the tour's first five decades of existence.
Marlene Hagge Biography:
Hagge began playing golf at age 3, and she dominated the California amateur circuit in the late 1940s. In 1947, just 13 years old, she became the youngest player to make the cut at the U.S. Women's Open, and finished eighth. In 1949, she won the first-ever U.S. Girls Junior Championship, then added the prestigious Western Girls Junior Championship. She also finished sixth at the U.S. Women's Open that year.
How big a part of women's golf had Hagge become by this age? So big that, just 16 years old, she was one of the 13 cofounders of the LPGA Tour (her older sister Alice Bauer was also a cofounder).
And when Hagge began her LPGA career in 1950, she did so as the youngest tour member (16) - a distinction she still holds.
Hagge was a petite, pretty blonde whom some have called the tour's first "glamour girl." But she could definitely play. After that stellar amateur career, it took her a while to get started on the LPGA, her first win coming at the 1952 Sarasota Open when she was just shy of 18 years old.
Hagge's best season, by far, was 1956, when she led the LPGA with eight wins, finished second nine times, and led in earnings. She also claimed her only major title that year at the LPGA Championship.
While she never had another season approaching that one, Hagge did continue playing well for a long time. In 1971, she set a 9-hole scoring record that stood for 13 years. She continued playing a full or partial schedule all the way through 1990.
Hagge was voted into the World Golf Hall of Fame in 2002 through the LPGA's Veterans category.