Double Eagles in the U.S. Open Golf Tournament

How many double eagles (albatrosses) have been made in the U.S. Open? Three is the number recorded by the United States Golf Association, which runs the tournament that is one of the four major championships of men's professional golf.

A double eagle is a score of 3-under-par on one hole of a golf course. ("Albatross" is the more common international term for this score; "double eagle" is the term used in the United States.) So to score a double eagle on a par-4, a golfer has to make a hole-in-one. On a par-5, a score of 2 is a double eagle.

We said above that the USGA has recorded three albatrosses in tournament history. We used that choice of words because the USGA itself acknowledges that its records are incomplete in this category ("records for ... double eagles are not available for all years," the USGA states in its U.S. Open records section).

However, what follows are the three known double eagles that have happened during a U.S. Open golf championship.

The List: U.S. Open Double Eagles

T.C. Chen, 1985 U.S. Open, first round, 527-yard second hole at Oakland Hills Country Club (South Course) in Birmingham, Michigan

Chen is more famous for another double in the 1985 U.S. Open — the infamous "double hit." With a four-stroke lead four holes into the final round, Chen had major trouble on the fifth even before he faced a chip shot from very thick grass next to the green. That grass caught his club after he struck the shot, and as he pulled his club out of the grass to complete his follow-through, his wedge hit the ball a second time. Double-hit, one-stroke penalty, quadruple bogey. Chen finished one stroke back, in second place.

The double hit (which earned T.C. Chen the nickname "Two Chip" Chen) far outweighs the memory today of what Chen did in the first round: record the first-known albatross in U.S. Open history. And it was the only known U.S. Open double eagle through the 2009 tournament.

In the first round, Chen holed a 3-wood from 256 yards on the second hole. His score that day was a 65, which tied the then-course record at Oakland Hill's South Course, and gave Chen the first-round lead.

Shaun Micheel, 2010 U.S. Open, fourth round, 523-yard sixth hole at Pebble Beach (Calif.) Golf Links

Micheel was a journeyman with only one win on the PGA Tour. But if you're going to be a journeyman, be one like Shaun Micheel. That one PGA Tour win was a major, the 2003 PGA Championship. And he made the second double eagle in U.S. Open history.

Micheel holed out with a 3-iron from 239 yards on the sixth hole in the final round. He finished with a 72 for the round, and finished the tournament tied for 22nd place.

Nick Watney, 2012 U.S. Open, first round, 522-yard 17th hole at The Olympic Club (Lake Course) in San Francisco, California

Watney holed out with a 5-iron from 190 yards on the 17th hole. He shot 69 for the round and finished the tournament tied for 21st place.

Related article: Every double eagle at the The Masters Tournament

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