Tuesday, December 7, 2021

Jon Rahm’s U.S. Open Victory and Yuka Saso’s U.S. Women’s Open Triumph Highlight USGA’s 2021 Championship Season

Golf Channel to air USGA feature programs in December

(LIBERTY CORNER, N.J.) – Jon Rahm’s U.S. Open victory at Torrey Pines Golf Course and Yuka Saso’s playoff win in the U.S. Women’s Open at The Olympic Club were indelible moments of the USGA’s 2021 championship season, which showcased the world’s best golfers on the game’s greatest stages. Golf Channel will shine a light on those achievements and others with four feature programs in the month of December.

“The USGA was thrilled to return to a full competitive schedule this year and also have nine championships televised on NBCUniversal,” said Jon Podany, chief commercial officer for the USGA. “The U.S. Open and U.S. Women’s Open were both viewed worldwide in more than 175 countries. ‘Live from the U.S. Women’s Open’ aired for the first time since 2005 and “Golf’s Longest Day” provided golf fans with comprehensive coverage of U.S. Open qualifying. Original productions like “From Many, One: Inside the 2021 U.S. Open” offered a tremendous behind-the-scenes perspective. All of the programs accentuate a successful season and a great relationship with our broadcast partner.”

Golf Channel will premiere “Rahm Shines at Torrey Pines” on Tuesday, Dec. 14 at 10 a.m. ET, with an encore presentation the following day at 10 p.m. ET. Rahm birdied the final two holes to earn a one-stroke victory over Louis Oosthuizen in the 121st U.S. Open. The 26-year-old closed with a 67, the championship’s lowest round, and became the first player from Spain to win the title. 

“Saso Strikes Gold at Olympic” will air on Wednesday, Dec. 15 at 10 a.m. ET. Saso converted a 12-foot birdie putt on the first sudden-death playoff hole to defeat Nasa Hataoka and claim the 76th U.S. Women’s Open. She joined two-time champion Inbee Park as the youngest winner (age 19 years, 11 months, 17 days) in championship history and became the first Filipino to capture the Harton S. Semple Trophy.

Additionally, Golf Channel will televise the “2021 USGA Year-in-Review Show” on Tuesday, Dec. 7 at 8 p.m. ET, providing viewers the chance to see footage from all 14 USGA championships and two international competitions in 2021, and also look back at Bryson DeChambeau’s decisive performance in the 2020 U.S. Open at Winged Foot Golf Club. “Bryson’s Breakthrough at Winged Foot” will air on Dec. 15 at 9 p.m. ET. DeChambeau’s six-stroke victory over 54-hole leader Matthew Wolff helped him join Jack Nicklaus and Tiger Woods as the only golfers to win an NCAA individual title, a U.S. Amateur and a U.S. Open.

USGA champions were in the spotlight in 2021. Jim Furyk, who won the 2003 U.S. Open, was victorious at Omaha (Neb.) Country Club in July to become the eighth player to win both the U.S. Open and U.S. Senior Open. Annika Sorenstam, a three-time U.S. Women’s Open champion, posted an eight-stroke triumph and tied the event’s 72-hole scoring record in winning the U.S. Senior Women’s Open.

Jensen Castle (U.S. Women’s Amateur) and Rose Zhang (U.S. Girls’ Junior) won individual USGA titles and also helped the USA to a second straight victory in the Curtis Cup Match. Castle survived a stroke-play playoff to reach match play and became the first No. 63 seed to hoist the Robert Cox Trophy as the Women’s Amateur winner. Zhang, an 18-year-old, followed last year’s Women’s Amateur victory with a Girls’ Junior crown and is the eighth player to hold both titles.

Stewart Hagestad, like Castle and Zhang, won a USGA championship and was key figure in the Walker Cup Match, a 14-12 victory for the USA. Hagestad won his second U.S. Mid-Amateur in October and was a member the winning USA Walker Cup Team for the third consecutive time in the biennial match.

James Piot rallied from a three-hole deficit to defeat Austin Greaser in the U.S. Amateur final at venerable Oakmont (Pa.) Country Club. It marked the third straight year an American won the USGA’s oldest championship. Nick Dunlap also seized control of his championship match on the inward nine to win the U.S. Junior Amateur. Dunlap and Piot both earned exemptions into the 2022 U.S. Open.

Lara Tennant leads the remaining list of USGA champions in 2021. She became the first player since Carol Semple Thompson to win at least three consecutive U.S. Senior Women’s Amateurs in her closely contested final with Ellen Port. Other USGA champions were: Gene Elliott (U.S. Senior Amateur), Blakesly Brock (U.S. Women’s Mid-Amateur), Savannah Barber and Alexa Saldana (U.S. Women’s Amateur Four-Ball) and Kiko Francisco Coelho and Leopoldo Herrera III (U.S. Amateur Four-Ball).

Showcasing the world’s best players with championships that provide the grandest stages to achieve their dreams, the USGA welcomes the global golf community to participate in and experience America’s national championships. Showcasing how “open” championship golf can be through qualifying, more than 40,000 golfers of various ages, races, genders and nationalities applied to play in a USGA championship in 2021. 

USGA Championship December Television Lineup  

Dec. 7/Tuesday; 8 p.m.; Golf Channel; 2021 USGA Year-in-Review Show

Dec. 14/Tuesday; 10 a.m.;Golf Channel; Rahm Shines at Torrey Pines

Dec. 15/Wednesday; 10 a.m.; Golf Channel; Saso Strikes Gold at Olympic

Dec. 15/Wednesday; 9 p.m.; Golf Channel; Bryson’s Breakthrough at Winged Foot

Dec. 15/Wednesday; 10 p.m.; Golf Channel; Rahm Shines at Torrey Pines (encore)

To learn more, visit usga.org.

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