What’s on the line Sunday at the U.S. Open?
He fired a final-round 67 to tie a U.S. Open record of 16 under par and slam the door on Brian Harman and Hideki Matsuyama by four strokes to win his first major championship.
Australia’s Marc Leishman shot a final round 75 to finish at one-under, in a tie for 27th.
And nothing could stop Koepka. That’s probably one of the coolest things I’ve ever experienced and to do it on Father’s Day it’s pretty neat.
The race for low amateur at the U.S. Open is down to Cameron Champ’s last two holes. “It feels awesome to get my name on this trophy with so many other great names. It’s truly an honor”. He had chances at the British Open and PGA that year, as well, but his play got overshadowed by others. Koepka was an All-American at Florida State, but he really started to earn the sport’s full attention when he won three times on the Challenge Tour in the span of seven weeks in 2013.
It seems straightforward that one of the longest drivers in the history of golf would succeed on the most expansive major championship course of all 441 that have been contested. Long admired on the European Tour, this year he has proved himself at a World Golf Championship event and now a major.
Some of the loudest cheers at the U.S. Open were reserved for a guy who never really challenged the leaders.
Any possible blunder by Koepka was eliminated by a two-putt par at the 17th and when he hit the longest tee shot of anyone at the 18th with, nearly unbelievably, a three-wood he had the title in hand and only a holed second from Harman at the last could change the US Open title’s destiny. Fleetwood missed the cut in his first Masters this past April.
The 27-year-old who went to Florida State and lives in South Florida, became the seventh consecutive major championship victor to become a first-time major victor.
England’s Tommy Fleetwood was alone in fourth place on 11 under after a level-par final round of 72. “I’ve been there a handful of times and had some good finishes, but I’m looking forward to getting the job done”. “Obviously, Brooks dealt with it amazingly”. He came and kicked everyone’s (behind) over there, didn’t he? I´ve been there a handful of times and had some good finishes. “Now he’s done it in a major”.
Brooks Koepka poses with the trophy with the leaderboard in the background at Erin Hills.
But perhaps the man in orange, whose golf bag is green and gold in honor of the Green Bay Packers, will provide a colorful ending to the first U.S. Open in Wisconsin.
Putnam was coming off of back-to-back under-par rounds Friday and Saturday, but winds kicked up to 30 miles per hour on Sunday, yielding higher scores.
The 30-year-old from Georgia had never gone past the second round in a US Open before this year, missing the cut on his two previous visits in 2012 and 2015. South Korea´s Kim Si-Woo was one behind Fowler on nine under after also shooting 68, while three players – Patrick Reed, Russell Henley and Charley Hoffman were on eight under.
Florida native Koepka becomes the seventh consecutive first-time major victor, a run started by Jason Day at the 2015 US PGA Championship. He was only two behind when he made the turn, but bogeys on the 12th and 15th holes – and no birdies until No. 18 – ended his hopes.
Koepka’s winning total of 16-under equals the lowest score to par for a US Open, matching Rory McIlroy’s victory at Congressional in 2011 on a par-71 layout.
This assortment at the top was made possible when the wheels momentarily came off Fowler’s game after his lights-out, record-setting 65 at Erin Hills on Thursday.
The gusts tapered off from the morning, but they still were making Erin Hills play more hard than it had all week. She hit her approach on 18 to 10 feet and two-putted for par. Of all his birdies, that 8-foot par putt might have been as big as any. Harman was dominant on the greens this week, but just didn’t have the firepower to topple Koepka.