Has A New Yorker Ever Won The Masters?
The simple answer is, yes. Many golf historians will tell you that the legendary Walter Hagen was the best golfer ever to come out of the Empire State. Hagen's 11-major championships put him in third place on the all-time list behind Jack Nicklaus with 18 majors and Tiger Woods with 15. However, the Rochester, New York native only played in one Masters tournament in 1936 and tied for 11th place.
The Masters didn't start until 1934. Hagen's prime playing days were behind him. However, in 1935, in the second-ever major at Augusta, Harrison, New York native Gene Sarazen won the the Green Jacket. Sarazen won seven major championships over his career. With that 1935 victory, he became the first New Yorker to win the Masters.
Sarazen only one once at Augusta but wasn't the last golfer from New York to win the Green Jacket. Six-years after the first Empire State victory at the Masters was at the hands of Lake Placid native, Craig Wood. In 1941 Wood become the second New Yorker to win the prestigious tournament. Wood won two majors and was a member of 3 Ryder Cup teams.
Craig Wood was the last New Yorker to win a Green Jacket at Augusta. With weather and training conditions, it may be hard for another Empire State native to win the Masters but who knows? One thing that I know for sure, there are plenty of young golfers in New York that think that they will be the next one. I hope one of them does it soon! Enjoy the best golf tournament of the year this weekend. The Masters!