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The PGA Championship

Tournament Info for: 1939 PGA Championship
Date: July 09 - 15, 1939
Site: Pomonok Country Club
Champion: Henry Picard
Purse: $10,600.00
Field: 64
Cut at:
Par: 0 - 0 - 0 (00 yards)
Players Advanced: 0

Qualifying for Match Play: A 36-hole qualifying round to get into match play was conducted the Sunday and Monday before the Championship. Ben Hogan, Dutch Harnson, Ky Laffoon and Emerick Kocsis were low qualifiers with 138, and 64 players qualified. A score of 147 , qualified for match play, with 11 players at 148 having a playoff for five spots. Some notable players who didn't qualify were Ed Dudley (148), Sam Snead (149), Joe Turnesa ( 151 ), Jimmy Hines ( 151 ) and Tom Creavy (153). The first and second rounds were 18 holes each, played in one day, with the remaining matches being played at 36 holes. Early Matches: The opening day saw Walter Hagen and Gene Sarazen, who between them had won eight of the 22 Championships, lose first-round matches. Tony Manero beat Hagen 1-up, and Jack Ryan beat Sarazen 1-up, with Sarazen hitting his tee shot out of bounds on the final hole. Herman Barron beat Jimmy Thomson, 2-up; Mike Turnesa eliminated Harry Cooper, 2 and 1; Ray Mangrum trounced 1935 U.S. Open winner Sam Parks, 6 and 5; and Harold McSpaden was beaten 1-up by Ken Tucker. In the second round, Ky Laffoon bowed to Tom O'Connor, 2-up, and Emerick Kocsis beat Vic Ghezzi, 3 and 1. Defending PGA Champion Paul Runyan advanced to the third round, beating Mortie Dutra, 3 and l, and Frank Champ, 3 and 2. Other favorites who advanced included Ben Hogan, who had an easy day defeating Stephen Zappe, 7 and 6, and Abe Espinosa, 5 and 4. Byron Nelson also had a relatively easy time beating Chuck Garringer, 4 and 2, and William Francis, 3 and l. Henry Picard had an easy morning match, as he beat Earl Martin, 6 and 5, but had a tough match with Joe Searhardt in the aftenoon. The contest was square going to the l6th, which Picard won with a bogey, the l7th was halved, and with Searhardt within easy birdie range at the final hole, Picard closed out the match by chipping in for birdie to win 2-up. In the third round, Dutch Harrison reeled off the day's best round, beating Bruce Coltart, 10 and 9, in a match that saw Harrison play the 27 holes in just 99 strokes. Horton Smith also played well, but he didn't have as easy a match, as he beat Clarence Doser, 4 and 2. In the early going, Smith looked like he was in trouble when he was 5-down after eight holes, but a back side 32 produced one of the greatest about-faces ever when Smith won seven holes in a row and finished the morning round 2-up. The match ended on the 34th green, and despite Doser being 5-under for the day, he lost to Smith, who was 9-under par. Henry Picard was 10-under for the day in a 29-hole match, beating A1 Watrous, 8 and 7. Runyan had the toughest match of the day, beating Hogan, 2 and 1. Not once in the morning round was either one more than 1-up, as they finished the first 18 even. Runyan jumped out to an early 2-up lead by winning the 20th and 21st holes, but Hogan got one back at the 26th hole. They halved the next eight holes, and when Hogan made bogey at the 35th hole, Runyan won the match. The upset of the day was the loss of past Champion Denny Shute to Emerick Kocsis, 3 and 2, in a match that saw Shute miss several short putts. Another past PGA Champion, Johnny Revolta, lost to Byron Nelson, 6 and 4. Nelson took advantage of Revolta's poor play in the morning round and built up a substantial lead of 7-up that was too much for Revolta to overcome. The quarter-finals saw the departure of the defending PGA Champion, as Dick Metz beat Runyan, 2 and 1. Metz shot 66 in the morning round to take a 4-up lead to lunch, but in the afternoon, Runyan whittled away at the lead, and, with a birdie at the 32nd hole, the match was square. All his hard work was in vain, however, as Metz birdied the next hole to go 1-up and then, on the 34th green, laid a perfect stymie which Runyan couldn't maneuver around to go 2-up. When both players parred the 35th hole, Runyan was eliminated. Another match that ended on the 35th hole saw Henry Picard beat Rod Munday, 2 and l. Munday was up most of the day and was 1-up after 27 holes. When, Munday bogeyed the 28th hole, the match was square. Picard won the 31st with a par and made a tough putt at the next hole for a half to protect his 1-up lead. Munday drew even at the 33rd with a birdie, and lost it on the next hole when he bogeyed. The match ended at the 35th when Munday buried his tee shot on the par-3 hole and was unable to match Picard's par. In the remaining matches, Dutch Harnson had an easy time in his match with Horton Smith, winning, 4 and 3, while Nelson matched Harrison's 99 in 27 holes to demolish Emerick Kocsis, 10 and 9. The semifinals provided another sensational day of golf for Nelson, as he steam-rolled Harrison, 10 and 9. In Nelson's 156 holes of golf, he was 28-under-par. In the other match, Picard had a tough time with Dick Metz, and the match was settled on the final green, with Picard getting a 1-up victory. The finals were decided in overtime for the fourth time, as Picard won a 1-up decision over Nelson with birdies on the 36th and 37th holes. Picard led most of the way until Nelson birdied the 29th hole to square the match. When Nelson birdied the 32nd hole, it was the first time in the match that he was in the lead. It was a dramatic birdie for Nelson, who alinost drove the 330-yard green. Picard stuck his second shot just seven feet away. Nelson chipped up, hitting the flag and bouncing back just three feet away. Picard putted first and missed, but laid Nelson a perfect stymie, which he successfully jumped into the hole. They halved the 33rd hole with birdies and on the next hole, Picard saved the match by making a 25-footer for par to prevent him from going 2-down. They halved the 35th hole with pars and then, at the final hole, which was only 300 yards long, both players were just short of the green with their drives. Nelson hit a poor second shot to within 12 feet, and Picard hit his four feet away. Nelson missed his putt, and Picard made his to send the match into overtime. At the 37th hole, Picard hit his drive under a movie truck, while Nelson was down the middle. Nelson was first from the fairway and hit a great shot, just five feet away. After Picard got relief for the obstruction, he knocked his second shot seven feet away. Again, Picard found himself in a do-or-die situation, and after all the cameras stopped, Picard stepped up and made the putt. Nelson missed his attempt.

Road to the Finals
Henry Picard beatRoundByron Nelson beat
Earl Martin,  6 and 4 First Round
(18 Holes)
Chuck Garringer,  4 and 2
Joe Zorhordt,  2-up Second Round
(18 Holes)
William Francis,  3 and 1
Al Watrous,  8 and 7 Third Round
(18 Holes)
Johnny Revolta,  6 and 4
Rod Munday,  2 and 1 Quarter Final
(36 Holes)
Emerick Kocsis,  10 and 9
Dick Metz,  1-up Semi Final
(36 Holes)
Dutch Harrison,  9 and 8
Mortie Dutra     Runyan
3 and 1
Paul Runyan    
Frank Champ     Champ
1-up
Fay Coleman    
Abe Espinosa     Espinosa
1-up (19)
Tony Joy    
Ben Hogan     Hogan
7 and 6
Steve Zappe    
Herman Barron     Barron
2-up
Jimmy Thomson    
Billy Burke     Burke
1-up
Jim Foulis    
Pat Circelli     Metz
7 and 6
Dick Metz    
Al Brosch     Brosch
1-up
Reggie Myles    
Ky Laffoon     Laffoon
3 and 2
Dick Shoemaker    
Al Marley     O'Connor
7 and 5
Tom O'Connor    
Jack Ryan     Ryan
1-up
Gene Sarazen    
Rod Munday     Munday
1-up (21)
Felix Serafin    
Earl Martin     Picard
6 and 4
Henry Picard    
Louis Chiapetta     Zorhordt
2-up
Joe Zorhordt    
Harold Mc Spaden     Tucker
1-up
Ken Tucker    
Tom Lo Presti     Watrous
1-up
Al Watrous    
Dutch Harrison     Harrison
3 and 2
John Kinder    
Johnny Farrell     Farrell
1-up
Charles Schneider    
Harry Cooper     Turnesa
2 and 1
Mike Turnesa    
Bruce Coltart     Coltart
4 and 3
Buddy Peteet    
Rut Coffey     Doser
3 and 1
Clarence Doser    
Ralph Guldahl     Guldahl
4 and 3
Clarence Owens    
Ray Mangrum     Mangrum
6 and 5
Sam Parks Jr.    
Eddie Schultz     Smith
5 and 4
Horton Smith    
John Gibson     Kocsis
1-up
Emerick Kocsis    
Joe Belfore     Ghezzi
3 and 2
Vic Ghezzi    
Ted Luther     Luther
1-up
Denny Shute    
Leo Diegel     Diegel
2 and 1
Willie Goggin    
Johnny Revolta     Revolta
2 and 1
Joe Turnesa    
Walter Hagen     Manero
1-up
Tony Manero    
Chuck Garringer     Nelson
4 and 2
Byron Nelson    
William Francis     Francis
2 and 1
Guy Paulsen    
Runyan
3 and 2
Hogan
5 and 4
Burke
2 and 1
Metz
1-up
O'Connor
2-up
Munday
2-up
Picard
2-up
Watrous
5 and 3
Harrison
3 and 2
Coltart
1-up (21)
Doser
2-up
Smith
3 and 2
Kocsis
3 and 1
Luther
3 and 1
Revolta
3 and 2
Nelson
3 and 1
Runyan
3 and 2
Metz
6 and 4
Munday
2-up
Picard
8 and 7
Harrison
10 and 9
Smith
4 and 2
Kocsis
3 and 2
Nelson
6 and 4
Metz
2 and 1
Picard
2 and 1
Harrison
4 and 3
Nelson
10 and 9
 
Picard
1-up
 
 
Nelson
9 and 8
 
Picard
1-up (37)