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Woods Wins Second U.S. Open Title June 16, 2002 | Farmingdale, N.Y.

(USGA/J.D. Cuban)

For the first time in U.S. Open history, the event was played on a publicly-owned golf course at Bethpage State Park’s Black Course and world No. 1 Tiger Woods emerged with his second title in three years by holding off Phil Mickelson by three strokes. Even with bogeys on two of his final three holes, Woods managed a final-round 2-over-par 72 for a 72-hole total of 277 (three under) to become the 20th player with multiple U.S. Open titles. He also became the sixth start-to-finish winner, matching his feat of 2000 at Pebble Beach.

Woods entered the last day with a four-stroke lead over Spain’s Sergio Garcia, but his margin was trimmed to two with bogeys on his first two holes. But it was Mickelson, not Garcia who would be Woods’ main pursuer on Sunday.

While Garcia slipped to a 4-over 74 that placed him six strokes off the winning total, Mickelson, playing in the penultimate pairing, celebrated his 32nd birthday with a birdie at the first hole. All day, the New York fans serenaded the left-hander with “Happy Birthday” chants and he responded by overcoming bogeys at five and six with birdies at eight and 11. He was within three strokes of Woods when weather delayed play for 49 minutes. Following the suspension, he birdied the par-5 13th to get within two strokes of Woods, but that’s the closest he would get. He also birdied 13 and when Mickelson bogeyed 16, the drama was gone. Woods three-putted the 18th as darkness settled upon Bethpage and the champion watched flashbulbs go off in earnest as he posed with the U.S. Open trophy.

Five amateurs qualified for the championship, including 16-year-old Derek Tolan and Andy Miller, the son of 1973 U.S. Open winner Johnny Miller. Defending champion Retief Goosen missed the cut, but Nick Faldo, who received a special exemption, played the weekend and tied for fifth. Seventy-two players made the cut (10-over 156), the highest number since the 1986 Open at Shinnecock Hills.