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The PGA Championship

Tournament Info for: 1938 PGA Championship
Date: July 10 - 16, 1938
Site: Shawnee Country Club
Champion: Paul Runyan
Purse: $10,000.00
Field: 64
Cut at:
Par: 37 - 35 - 72 (00 yards)
Players Advanced: 0

Qualifying for Match Play: A 36-hole qualifying round for match play was conducted the Sunday and Monday before the Championship. Defending PGA Champion Denny Shute was exempt and 63 players qualified. Frank Moore was low qualifier with 136. A score of 150 qualified for match play, with seven players at 151 having a play off for four spots. Notable players who didn't make it to match play were Mortie Dutra (153) and Willie Hunter (154). The first and second rounds were 18 holes each, played in one day, with the remaining matches being played at 36 holes. Early Matches: In the first day of play, Felix Serafin, a 32-year-old from the coal fields of nearby Scranton, Pa., grabbed the headlines as he upset both Harry Cooper in the first round, 4 and 3, and Ky Laffoon in the second round, 3 and 2. Other upsets saw the departures of past PGA Champions Johnny Revolta and Leo Diegel. Both upsets occurred in the second round, with Jimmy Demaret winning a tough match against Revolta, 2-up. Horton Smith, with a two, three 3s and only one five on his card, easily defeated Leo Diegel, 4 and 3. The 1939 runner-up, Harold McSpaden, also lost in the second round as Ray Mangrum took him 20 holes. After both players shot a 33 on the back side to send the match into overtime, both halved the 19th hole with birdies. Mangrum birdied the 20th hole to win the match, 1-up. Defending PGA Champion Denny Shute had an easy time in his two matches, defeating Clyde Usina, 3 and 2, and John Thoren, 7 and 6. Gene Sarazen also had an easy time in his two matches, beating Leo Walper, 4 and 3, then beating Harry Nettlebladt on the 13th hole, 6 and 5. Tony Manero had an easy first round match, beating Joe Belfore, 5 and 4, but lost his second round match to Paul Runyan, 3 and 2. Byron Nelson easily beat Clarence Yockey, 5 and 4, but in the second round, had to shoot 33 on the back side to square his match with Alvin Krueger. Nelson won the match on the 20th hole, when Krueger hit his tee shot out of bounds. In another overtime match, Billy Burke beat Frank Moore with a 15-foot birdie on the 19th hole. In the third round, Shute's attempt to win his third straight PGA crown was halted when Jimmy Hines eliminated him, 2-and-l. The match was square after the morning round, but Shute shot a 38 on the front side of the afternoon round to fall 2-down to Hines. With a birdie and a par, Shute was able to square the match again. However, a dead stymie on the 30th hole that Shute tried unsuccessfully to jump was the turning point, giving Hines an edge which he maintained and finally built up to a 2-and-l victory. Nelson routed Harry Bassler, 11 and 10, in perhaps the most sensational day of golf in PGA history. Nelson was 8-under-par in his 26 holes. He had a 64 in the morning round in which he won eight of the first nine holes. He went to lunch after winning 12 holes and halving the rest. In the afternoon, he made eight consecutive pars, and Bassler actually was able to win two holes with birdies. In another rout, Jim Foulis steamrolled over Marvin Stahl, 6 and 5, and Serafin, the first-day hero who upset Cooper and Laffoon, was given a dose of reality when Sam Snead was 7-under for the day to win, 4-and-3. Henry Picard advanced to the quarter-finals with his 4-and-3 victory over Dick Metz, and faced Gene Sarazen, who, despite playing poorly, still had beaten Jimmy Demaret, 1-up, in a match that went 38 holes. Another extra-hole match saw Ray Mangrum miss an 18-inch putt on the 37th green, which enabled Paul Runyan to win the match. In the quarter-finals, Sarazen had a tough time in his match against Henry Picard. Sarazen finished the morning round 1-up, but Picard quickly squared the match at the 19th hole with a birdie. At the 20th hole, Sarazen missed a four-foot birdie that would have restored his lead, and his game became ragged. Sarazen lost the 21st hole when he couldn't get out of a bunker and was forced to pick up. Then Sarazen got a disappointing half at the par-3, 23rd hole when he laid Picard a dead stymie, which Picard jumped over and made to halve the hole. Sarazen lost the next hole, missing a three-footer to go 2-down. When Picard drove his tee shot out of bounds at the 27th, but still won the hole, it was just a matter of time before Sarazen would fall. Sarazen gave it a valiant try on the back side, but Picard won the contest on the 34th hole. Another surprising upset had Jimmy Hines beating Nelson, 2 and 1. Hines won the last four holes of the morning round to go 4-up, but Nelson squared the match after the 29th hole. The contest stayed that way until Hines made an 18-footer on the 34th hole to go 1-up, then won the match on the 35th hole with a stymie that forced Nelson into a bogey. In other matches, Sam Snead rolled past Jim Foulis, 8 and 7, and Paul Runyan was a 4-and-3 winner over Horton Smith. The semifinals featured one of the best matches in PGA history, with Snead beating Hines, 1 -up. It took a finish of four consecutive 3s on Snead's part to win, and if the contest had been decided by stroke play, Hines, who was 8-under for the day, would have defeated Snead by one stroke. In the 147 holes of match play, Snead was 21-under-par. In the other match, Paul Runyan was 6-under in 33 holes and easily beat Henry Picard, 4 and 3. In the finals, Paul Runyan beat Sam Snead, 8 and 7, to win the PGA crown for the second time. Up to this point, it was the most decisive victory in the finals. Runyan's masterful short game produced a 67 in the morning, good for a 5-up lead. In the afternoon, the momentum continued. He made the turn in 35, with a 7-up advantage, then won the 28th hole, closing out the match with a half on the 29th. Runyan was 24-under-par for the 196 holes he played and in his last 70 holes only made one bogey.

Road to the Finals
Paul Runyan beatRoundSam Snead beat
Frank Champ,  4 and 3 Levi Lynch,  5 and 4 First Round
(18 Holes)
Teri Johnson,  4 and 3 Tony Manero,  3 and 2 Second Round
(18 Holes)
Felix Serafin,  4 and 3 Ray Mangrum,  1-up (37) Third Round
(18 Holes)
Jim Foulis,  8 and 7 Horton Smith,  4 and 3 Quarter Final
(36 Holes)
Jimmy Hines,  1-up Henry Picard,  4 and 3 Semi Final
(36 Holes)
Denny Shute     Shute
3 and 2
Clyde Usina    
Leo Mallory     Thoren
4 and 2
John Thoren    
Tony Butler     Walsh
2 and 1
Frank Walsh    
Jimmy Hines     Hines
3 and 1
Alex Watson    
Byron Nelson     Nelson
5 and 4
Clarence Yockey    
Alvin Krueger     Krueger
2 and 1
Ian Robertson    
Ed Dudley     Dudley
3 and 2
Johnny Farrell    
Harry Bassler     Bassler
2-up
Alex Gerlak    
Clarence Clark     Stahl
4 and 3
Marvin Stahl    
Gene Marchi     Whitehead
1-up (19)
George Whitehead    
Guy Paulsen     Thomson
5 and 4
Jimmy Thomson    
Jim Foulis     Foulis
1-up
Willie Goggin    
Frank Champ     Snead
4 and 3
Sam Snead    
Teri Johnson     Johnson
2 and 1
Henry Ransom    
Harry Cooper     Serafin
4 and 3
Felix Serafin    
Alex Follmer     Laffoon
1-up
Ky Laffoon    
Errie Ball     Moore
1-up (19)
Frank Moore    
Billy Burke     Burke
2 and 1
Willie Klein    
Mike Demassey     Smith
2 and 1
Horton Smith    
Leo Diegel     Diegel
2 and 1
Francis Gallett    
Ted Luther     Mangrum
3 and 2
Ray Mangrum    
Harold Mc Spaden     Mc Spaden
3 and 2
Sam Parks Jr    
Levi Lynch     Runyan
5 and 4
Paul Runyan    
Joe Belfore     Manero
5 and 4
Tony Manero    
John Kinder     Nettlebladt
4 and 3
Harry Nettlebladt    
Gene Sarazen     Sarazen
4 and 3
Leo Walper    
Jimmy Demaret     Demaret
5 and 4
Frank Rodio    
Wiffy Cox     Revolta
4 and 3
Johnny Revolta    
Andrew Gibson     Picard
3 and 2
Henry Picard    
Leo Fraser     Shave
4 and 3
Bob Shave    
Dick Metz     Metz
4 and 3
Dick Renagan    
Ralph Guldahl     Guldahl
4 and 2
John Malutic    
Shute
7 and 6
Hines
2 and 1
Nelson
1-up (20)
Bassler
4 and 3
Stahl
6 and 5
Foulis
1-up
Snead
4 and 3
Serafin
3 and 2
Burke
1-up (19)
Smith
2 and 1
Mangrum
1-up (20)
Runyan
3 and 2
Sarazen
6 and 5
Demaret
2-up
Picard
3 and 2
Metz
1-up
Hines
2 and 1
Nelson
11 and 10
Foulis
6 and 5
Snead
4 and 3
Smith
3 and 2
Runyan
1-up (37)
Sarazen
1-up (38)
Picard
4 and 3
Hines
2 and 1
Snead
8 and 7
Runyan
4 and 3
Picard
3 and 2
 
Snead
1-up
 
 
Runyan
4 and 3
 
Runyan
8 and 7