1976: Roger Maltbie wins the inaugural Memorial Tournament at Muirfield Village in a playoff

Roger Maltbie

Roger Maltbie takes The Memorial in a playoff

On this day, In 1976 Roger Maltbie won the first ever Memorial Tournament at Muirfield Village in Dublin, OH.  The win came in a playoff when Maltbie dropped a 15 foot birdie on the fourth hole to overtake Hale Irwin for the honors.  It took some MAJOR luck for Maltbie to come away with the title…

On the third playoff hole, Maltbie hooked his approach shot, seemingly heading for OB until it hit a metal stake that holds the gallery ropes in place… ricocheting onto the green.

He made the most of that big break and made par to extend the playoff to the fourth hole, where it would eventually end.  Hale Irwin was potentially stymied on the next hole after Maltbie’s lucky bounce.  He drove his tee shot behind a tree, failed to reach the green from the rough and ended up in a green side bunker.  He got to the putting surface in four, while Maltbie made a birdie three.

The win was worth $40,000 for Maltbie and lucky for him he kept this winners check unlike the situation he had in 1975 Pleasant Valley Classic.

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