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This day in sports: Arnold Palmer erases seven-stroke deficit to win U.S. Open

Arnold Palmer begins to celebrate after winning the 1960 U.S. Open at Cherry Hills outside of Denver.
Arnold Palmer begins to celebrate after winning the 1960 U.S. Open at Cherry Hills outside of Denver. He trailed by seven strokes at the start of the final round.
(Associated Press)

Arnold Palmer came from seven strokes down on this date in 1960 to beat amateur Jack Nicklaus by two strokes and win the U.S. Open at Cherry Hills Country Club in Denver.

Palmer fired a six-under-par 65 in the final round as 47-year-old Ben Hogan faltered on the final two holes in his quest for a fifth U.S. Open title.

Palmer started the final round with four birdies, including a 30-foot chip shot that went into the cup on the second hole.

“When I sank that shot on the second hole, I got the feeling that I could do it,” Palmer said. “I really felt lifted.”

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A look at some of the biggest moments in sports history to have occurred on June 10, including Ben Hogan forcing a playoff in the 1950 U.S. Open at Merion G.C.

This week, the U.S. Open golf championship was to begin play Thursday at Winged Foot Golf Club in Mamaroneck, N.Y., but the tournament was postponed because of the COVID-19 pandemic. It has been rescheduled for Sept. 17-20.

The Dodgers were set to wrap up a four-game series with the Arizona Diamondbacks at Dodger Stadium. The Angels were scheduled to start a four-game series with the Texas Rangers at Angel Stadium.

Here is a look at memorable games and outstanding sports performances on this date:

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1921 — Illinois wins the first NCAA track and field championships, held at Stagg Field in Chicago. The Fighting Illini take the team title ahead of second-place Notre Dame, scoring 20 1/4 points to the Fighting Irish’s 16 3/4. Gus Pope of Washington is the individual points leader with 10 when he wins the shotput and discus.

1941 — Joe Louis knocks out Billy Conn in the 13th round in front of 54,487 fans at the Polo Grounds in New York to retain his world heavyweight title. After 12 rounds Conn is ahead on points but he abandons his strategy of boxing and goes for the knockout. Louis is ready for him, and sends the undersized Irishman from Pittsburgh to the canvas with a thunderous right hand.

1972 — Jack Nicklaus wins the U.S. Open at Pebble Beach by three strokes over Bruce Crampton of Australia and ties Bobby Jones’ record of 13 major titles. Playing the final round in high winds, Nicklaus is challenged by Arnold Palmer, who has a chance to tie him on No. 14. But Palmer misses a birdie putt, then bogeys the next two holes. Nicklaus just misses a hole in one on the par-three 17th hole.

1986 — Don Sutton, 41, becomes the 19th pitcher in baseball history to win 300 games when he pitches a three-hitter to give the Angels a 5-1 victory over the Texas Rangers at Anaheim Stadium. The right-hander gets home run support from Brian Downing and Ruppert Jones. Sutton would finish his Hall of Fame career with the Dodgers in 1988, winning 324 games, 58 of them shutouts.

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1990 — Tied with Mike Donald after an 18-hole playoff, Hale Irwin, 45, makes an eight-foot birdie putt on the first hole of sudden-death play to win the U.S. Open at Medinah Country Club northwest of Chicago. It is Irwin’s third U.S. Open title and he is the oldest winner of the tournament and the first to win playing on a special exemption from the United States Golf Assn.

1995 — Michael Johnson is the first national champion at 200 meters and 400 meters since 1899 when he wins both races at Hornet Stadium in Sacramento. In the 200, Johnson runs a wind-aided 19.83 seconds, beating Kevin Little and Jeff Williams. In the 400, Johnson is clocked at 43.66 seconds, finishing ahead of Butch Reynolds and Derek Mills.

2000 — Tiger Woods turns the 100th U.S. Open at the Pebble Beach Golf Links into a one-man show, winning by 15 strokes over Ernie Els of South Africa and Miguel Angel Jimenez of Spain. Woods’ 15-stroke margin shatters the Open mark of 11 set by Willie Smith in 1899 and is the largest in any major championship — surpassing the 13-stroke victory by Old Tom Morris in the 1862 British Open.

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2017 — Brooks Koepka breaks away from a tight pack with three consecutive birdies on the back nine at Erin Hills in Wisconsin and finishes with a five-under-par 67 to win the U.S. Open for his first major championship. A par on the final hole ties Rory McIlroy’s record score of 16-under 268 set in 2011.

2017 — With a driving layup in the second quarter, Diana Taurasi breaks the WNBA career scoring record during the Phoenix Mercury’s lopsided 90-59 loss to the Sparks at Staples Center. Taurasi scores 19 points for the game to give her 7,494, passing Tina Thompson’s mark of 7,488.

SOURCES: The Times, Associated Press


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