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1994 U.S. Open
Recap and Scores for the 1994 US Open Golf Tournament

A controversial ruling played a role in the 1994 U.S. Open, a tournament that ended in an 18-hole playoff that stretched to 20 holes.

Ernie Els held a two-stroke lead as the final round began, on the strength of a third-round 66. But he badly mis-hit his first tee shot of the final round, deep into trouble off the first fairway of Oakmont Country Club.

A large number loomed as a possiblity. But a USGA rules official ruled that a broadcast truck and its extendable arm were in Els' line of play, and that the truck was a temporary immovable obstruction. In fact, the truck was quite movable - it drove away not long after the incident at hand. But because of the ruling, Els was allowed a free drop in an area where escape was much more likely. The rules official later admitted he had been wrong, and Els should have been required to play the ball from the original, horrendous situation.

Still, it's important to note that the ruling did not win the tournament for Els. Els still bogied the hole, and it was the overnight leader's very first hole of the day.

Els wound up shooting 73 in the fourth round, while Loren Roberts and Colin Montgomerie both fired rounds of 70 to catch Els and force a Monday playoff.

Els started the playoff very shaky, too, with a bogey and then a triple-bogey. But while Montgomerie faded, Els and Roberts kept battling. Both recorded 74s, which led to sudden-death (Monty had a 78 and dropped out after 18 holes).

Els and Roberts continued on for two more holes, until Roberts bogied the 20th hole of the day and Els parred it for the victory. It was Els' first major championship victory - and also his first PGA Tour win.

Two-time U.S. Open champion Curtis Strange finished one stroke out of the playoff after posting four straight rounds of even-par 70.

The 1994 U.S. Open was the last played by Arnold Palmer. Palmer hadn't played a U.S. Open since 1983 - the most recent time the U.S. Open visited Oakmont - but was granted a special exemption by the USGA because Oakmont was again the host course. Palmer grew up in Latrobe, Pa., and Oakmont was always a special place to Palmer. His very first U.S. Open in 1953 was also at Oakmont.

1994 U.S. Open Scores
Results from the 1994 U.S. Open golf tournament played at the par-71 Oakmont Country Club in Oakmont, Pa. (x-won playoff; a-amateur):

x-Ernie Els 69-71-66-73--279 $320,000
Colin Montgomerie 71-65-73-70--279 $141,827
Loren Roberts 76-69-64-70--279 $141,827
Curtis Strange 70-70-70-70--280 $75,728
John Cook 73-65-73-71--282 $61,318
Clark Dennis 71-71-70-71--283 $49,485
Greg Norman 71-71-69-72--283 $49,485
Tom Watson 68-73-68-74--283 $49,485
Jeff Maggert 71-68-75-70--284 $37,179
Frank Nobilo 69-71-68-76--284 $37,179
Jeff Sluman 72-69-72-71--284 $37,179
Duffy Waldorf 74-68-73-69--284 $37,179
David Edwards 73-65-75-72--285 $29,767
Scott Hoch 72-72-70-71--285 $29,767
Jim McGovern 73-69-74-69--285 $29,767
Fred Couples 72-71-69-74--286 $25,899
Steve Lowery 71-71-68-76--286 $25,899
Seve Ballesteros 72-72-70-73--287 $22,477
Hale Irwin 69-69-71-78--287 $22,477
Scott Verplank 70-72-75-70--287 $22,477
Steve Pate 74-66-71-77--288 $19,464
Sam Torrance 72-71-76-69--288 $19,464
Bernhard Langer 72-72-73-72--289 $17,223
Kirk Triplett 70-71-71-77--289 $17,223
Chip Beck 73-73-70-74--290 $14,705
Craig Parry 78-68-71-73--290 $14,705
Mike Springer 74-72-73-71--290 $14,705
Lennie Clements 73-71-73-75--292 $11,514
Jim Furyk 74-69-74-75--292 $11,514
Davis Love III 74-72-74-72--292 $11,514
Jack Nicklaus 69-70-77-76--292 $11,514
Jumbo Ozaki 70-73-69-80--292 $11,514
Fulton Allem 73-70-74-76--293 $9,578
Mark Carnevale 75-72-76-70--293 $9,578
Ben Crenshaw 71-74-70-78--293 $9,578
Brad Faxon 73-69-71-80--293 $9,578
Tom Kite 73-71-72-77--293 $9,578
Tom Lehman 77-68-73-75--293 $9,578
Peter Baker 73-73-73-75--294 $8,005
Bradley Hughes 71-72-77-74--294 $8,005
Gordon J. Brand 73-71-73-77--294 $8,005
Brandt Jobe 72-74-68-80--294 $8,005
Fran Quinn 75-72-73-75--295 $7,222
Fred Funk 74-71-74-77--296 $6,595
Paul Goydos 74-72-79-71--296 $6,595
Don Walsworth 71-75-73-77--296 $6,595
David Berganio Jr. 73-72-76-76--297 $5,105
Olin Browne 74-73-77-73--297 $5,105
Tim Dunlavey 76-70-78-73--297 $5,105
Mike Emery Jr. 74-73-75-75--297 $5,105
Jim Gallagher Jr. 74-68-77-78--297 $5,105
Barry Lane 77-70-76-74--297 $5,105
Wayne Levi 76-70-73-78--297 $5,105
Phil Mickelson 75-70-73-79--297 $5,105
Tommy Armour III 73-73-79-73--298 $4,324
Hugh Royer III 72-71-77-78--298 $4,324
Scott Simpson 74-73-73-78--298 $4,324
Steven Richardson 74-73-76-76--299 $4,105
Fuzzy Zoeller 76-70-76-77--299 $4,105
Doug Martin 76-70-74-81--301 $3,967
Dave Rummells 71-74-82-74--301 $3,967
Emlyn Aubrey 72-69-81-80--302 $3,800
Ed Humenik 74-72-81-75--302 $3,800
Mike Smith 74-73-78-77--302 $3,800

Back to list of U.S. Open Winners

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