1977: Ben Crenshaw wins the Colonial Invitational by one stroke

Crenshaw

1977 Colonial – Crenshaw collects his 5th victory

On this day, In 1977 Ben Crenshaw made up a five‐stroke deficit in only six holes, swept past the leader, John Schroreder, with a 31 on the back nine and scored a one‐stroke victory today in the $200.000 Colonial National invitation golf tournament.

Crenshaw, a bitterly disappointed loser just a week before at the Byron Nelson, was erratic, with five birdies and four bogeys, but captured the $40,000 first prize and the fifth victory of his career. He posted a closing 69, one under par on the tough, old 7,190‐yard Colonial Country Club course.

Crenshaw, is a Texas native and learned golf under the tutelage of Harvey Penick, there was litter surprise he was the gallery favorite.

Crenshaw’s wife, Polly, was in tears in the clubhouse when Ben faltered with consecutive bogeys from bunkers on the eighth and ninth holes, dropping five strokes off the pace. But she responded with squeals of delight when Ben began to move. He birdied the 10th and Schroeder, playing behind him, bogeyed it. It was a two‐stroke swing and cut the margin to three strokes.

Crenshaw chipped in for a birdie on the 12th hole and Schroeder bogeyed the 13th after missing the green. That cut Schroeder’s lead to a single stroke.  Crenshaw made that up on the 14th, running in a 25‐30‐foot birdie putt that sent him leaping into the air with raised fists clenched in jubilation.

Now tied for the lead, he missed a birdie on the par‐3 16th, then drove the fairway, lofted his approach to 6‐8 feet and made the go‐ahead birdie putt on the 17th. On the final hole, his approach was to the front of the green and he faced a long putt, 40 feet or more. It stopped six feet short and he sank the put,

Schroeder came to the 18th needing a birdie to tie, but his approach went well beyond the flag, His putt, trying for the birdie, just missed, and Crenshaw was the winner.

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