My wife and I have started playing in a monthly mixed couples two person scramble tourney which gives out about $2000 in cash and prizes. I don't love the format, but my wife is very new to the game and she very much loves the format, as it usually takes a lot of pressure off her to perform well, while giving her some tourney experience and much needed practice.
Here's the question: I'll present the exact example. On a par 3, I hit my tee shot to about 10'. My wife hits hers on the green, but is 30' away. We decide to use my shot. We pick up her ball. I let her putt first, so I can get a read of the line. She hits the birdie putt to about 3" of the cup. She proceeds to walk up and tap it in for a par....with me still waiting for my birdie attempt. I make my birdie attempt and it misses.
Our competitor couple says, "It's a good thing you didn't make that birdie putt, as it would not have counted. [My wife] already hit her putt into the hole, giving you guys a par, and completing the hole".
Now, I completely understand the logic. We should have marked her putt which was 3" away, and then I could take my attempt at the birdie. Then when I missed, we could replace her ball, and tap in for par. I understood the concept that once one of our shots is holed (her par putt), that hole is over for us and taking my attempt after she holed out would not count. The logic is fine.
My question is, without this rule clearly stated in a rules sheet somewhere, specific to this format, how can this rule be upheld? I have not looked through the USGA rules of golf to see if there is a specific section regarding a scramble (captains choice) format and its ruling quirks. This rule was not stated on any printed rules sheets at the tournament. I'm just wondering if this rule is in print, and is common knowledge in THIS format.