29th U.S. Open | June 3-5, 1925
Worcester Country Club, Worcester, Mass.
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|x-Willie Macfarlane, Scotland||74||-||67||-||72||-||78||—||291|
|Bobby Jones, United States (a)||77||-||70||-||70||-||74||—||291|
|Johnny Farrell, United States||71||-||74||-||69||-||78||—||292|
|Francis Ouimet, United States (a)||70||-||73||-||73||-||76||—||292|
|Walter Hagen, United States||72||-||76||-||71||-||74||—||293|
|Gene Sarazen, United States||72||-||72||-||75||-||74||—||293|
|a-amateur; x-won 36-hole playoff|
Given the top finishers, and considering that this playoff between the soft-spoken Macfarlane — a man who really did not like playing tournament golf — and the elegant Jones went 36 holes, many pundits consider this one of the greatest U.S. Opens of the first half-century.
But one of the tournament’s signature historical moments of sportsmanship came very early, and it involved Jones.
Set to play a shot out of the 11th-hole rough in the first round, Jones saw his golf ball move. He told Hagen that it moved when his iron brushed the grass — and he eventually called a penalty shot on himself, even though no one else witnessed the infraction. It ended up costing him his second U.S. Open title in three years.
Meanwhile, Macfarlane recorded a 67 in the second round — the best single-round score in U.S. Open history. But nursing a three-stroke advantage with seven holes remaining in the final round, the Scot lost them all to fall into a playoff with Jones.
The golfers could not settle it in an 18-hole playoff. Both shot 75. So it went an extra 18 holes.
Jones quickly jumped out to a four-shot lead after nine holes. But Macfarlane, a wonderful iron player, made birdies on both back-nine par-3 holes (Nos. 10, 13). And the two golfers were once again tied after Jones made a bogey at the 15th hole, a par 5.
Still tied heading to the finishing hole, Jones leaked an approach shot out of the rough into a greenside bunker. He made a bogey at the par 4, while Macfarlane two-putted from 50 feet for par — and a 72, to Jones’ 73.
Macfarlane played in 16 U.S. Opens but registered only one other top-10 showing. He was a 21-time winner on the PGA Tour.