Back-to-Back Winners of the U.S. Women's Open

How many times has a golfer won two consecutive U.S. Women's Opens? Back-to-back victories in this, the biggest of the women's majors, aren't common — but they aren't especially rare, either.

Seven golfers have won the U.S. Women's Open, a major first played in 1946, in back-to-back years. Two of these even had this major as their first career win on the LPGA Tour. Three of them overcame five-stroke, final-round deficits in one of their wins.

Not surprisingly, all seven of these back-to-back champs are World Golf Hall of Fame members. Here they are, in chronological order:

Mickey Wright, 1958-59

Wright was the second (and most-recent) golfer, after Betsy Rawls, to record four wins in the U.S. Women's Open. The first two were consecutive in 1958 and 1959. She also won the USWO in 1961 and 1964. Wright retired with 82 LPGA wins, the record at the time, today second only to Kathy Whitworth. And she won 13 majors, second on the list of golfers with the most wins in women's majors.

Wright led wire-to-wire in the 1958 U.S. Women's Open, ultimately winning by five strokes over two-time USWO champ Louise Suggs, the runner-up. And Suggs was again the runner-up to Wright in Wright's 1959 victory, which was by two strokes.

Donna Caponi, 1969-70

Caponi is the first of two golfers on this list whose very first LPGA win was in the U.S. Women's Open. That was the 1969 USWO in Caponi's case, where she entered the final round five strokes behind the leader, Ruth Jessen. But Caponi carded a final-round 69 in brutal heat, easily the best score among those who finished in the Top 10, and won by a stroke.

She successfully defended her title in 1970 despite a 77 in the final round. After entering the final round with a four-stroke lead, Caponi won by one over Sandra Haynie and Sandra Spuzich.

Susie Maxwell Berning, 1972-73

Berning first won the U.S. Women's Open in 1968. Then she went back-to-back in 1972-73. She won at Winged Foot in 1972 despite opening with a 79 in the first round. But scoring conditions were tough throughout, and a 71 in the final round produced a one-stroke victory. In 1973, Berning had an easier time of it. Her 69-72 on the weekend gave her a five-stroke victory.

Hollis Stacy, 1977-78

Stacy was well-familiar with winning consecutive USGA championships before ever reaching the LPGA Tour: She is the only person to win three U.S. Girls' Junior championships in a row. Stacy accomplished that in 1969-71.

Her victory in the 1977 U.S. Women's Open was just her second on the LPGA Tour. She led wire-to-wire after an opening-round 70 that was one of the lowest scores of the tournament, and finished with a two-stroke win over Nancy Lopez. In 1978, Stacy made a five-foot, par-saving putt on the final hole to secure a one-stroke win over JoAnne Carner and Sally Little.

Stacy tied for 15th place going for the threepeat in 1979, but she did later add a third USWO title, winning again in 1984.

Betsy King, 1989-90

King's 1989 U.S. Women's Open victory was her fifth of the year on the LPGA Tour. And that victory made King the first LPGA golfer ever to win more than $500,000 in a single season. King held or shared the lead start to finish, and won by four strokes over runner-up Nancy Lopez. In 1990, King was five behind Patty Sheehan with one round to go. But in the final round she scored 70 to Sheehan's 76 and won by a single stroke.

Annika Sorenstam, 1995-96

She wound up with 72 career victories on the LPGA Tour, but Sorenstam's very first LPGA win was in the 1995 U.S. Women's Open. In her second season on the U.S. tour (she was LPGA Rookie of the Year in 1994), Sorenstam began the final round five shots off Meg Mallon's lead. But Sorenstam had a 68 in that final round to Mallon's 74, producing the one-stroke win. It tied the record for biggest final-round comeback to win in the U.S. Women's Open.

Sorenstam won two other times on the LPGA Tour in 1995, then her victory in the 1996 USWO was her fourth career win. This time Annika led by three after both the second and third rounds, and wound up winning by six over runner-up Kris Tschetter.

It was five years before Sorenstam won another major, but she ended her career with 10 total titles in majors, including her last at the 2006 U.S. Women's Open.

Karrie Webb, 2000-01

Webb was tied for second after each of the first two rounds of the 2000 U.S. Women's Open, but in the third round she opened a four-stroke lead. Despite a 73, her highest score of the tournament, in the final round, Webb wound up winning by five over runners-up Meg Mallon and Cristie Kerr.

In her title defense the following year, Webb ran away with it. Her eight-stroke margin of victory over runner-up Se Ri Pak was the largest in more than two decades. That victory was Webb's 24th on the LPGA Tour. She wound up with 41 career wins and seven victories in major championships.

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