Published: Tue, June 20, 2017
Sport | By Wendy Sparks

Golfers seem to give good reviews to US Open at Erin Hills

Golfers seem to give good reviews to US Open at Erin Hills

Hard to think it would've bothered Koepka, who has seen a lot. His performance was anything but.

The world No 22 birdied three of his final five holes to shoot a five-under 67 at Erin Hills to pull clear of overnight leader Brian Harman and the chasing pack. The next year, he earned a spot in the U.S. Open through a qualifier in England, and his tie for fourth at Pinehurst No. 2 helped him earn a card on the PGA Tour. "But I'm happy with the way I played, and it gives me confidence going forward".

"That second shot was unbelievable - that pin is hanging off the back", Koepka said. He had six birdies and one bogey in an exhibition of steady play.

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. Bob called Groat when it was over to say thanks for introducing him to a game that made this Father's Day unlike any other.

Grounding complete, he returned to the States in 2015 to join the PGA Tour. But he's been close a lot.

Normally 5 under par would be good enough to win, or at least contend for, the U.S. Open title. He wouldn't catch Koepka, no one would.

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Fortunately for Koepka, he made a decision to play the final round and went on to win by three shots, before attempting to drive through the night to contest final qualifying for the Open Championship. Now he truly belongs.

Koepka is right that baseball is in his blood - his great uncle Dick Groat won two World Series with the Pittsburgh Pirates and was named National League MVP in 1960. "For us it was like two minutes". "But he just said a few things, and just stay patient".

"I'd love to get a map and just look at all the places I've won", Koepka said.

"You can't make mistakes every shot". His tee shot on the par three ended up rolling off the green and down a slope. He put his second shot within about nine feet.

"That par save was massive on 13", Koepka said. "I just felt like I should be winning more". "Anywhere over there was fine". The tournament will be played 15 June thorough 18 June. The feat came with a provisional two-shot lead heading into yesterday's finish; unfortunately, the four-year pro's stroke turned ice cold, handing Koepka the flawless opportunity for a dramatic - and, of course, record-breaking - run.

He surged with his string of birdies starting with the 14th hole, and he controlled the tournament the rest of the way. A chip on the fourth nearly went in, but then trickled back to 4 feet and he blocked the par putt to the right.

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Yes, both of them, neither to be mistaken with anything Tiger Woods has done over the years. "I think I'll be more comfortable playing in the big events, and (it'll) help me play better the next time". It had to be, especially with the wind. "I don't get those very often". Hopefully though, in future majors I can play in the last or next to last group to give myself a better chance.

They would never admit as much, but one wonders whether the good members of the United States Golf Association might have secretly wished for Johnson, and not the impressively unflappable Koepka, to be on the end of the pep talk on Saturday evening. He bogeyed the hole. Just came up a little short. "But Brooks played so well on Monday". That is, as long as you were resilient, tough-as-nails, and patient. As Harman tied for 2nd place with Hideki Matsuyama.

It added another less-than-fantastic finish for Fowler at the majors.

His friends and support team preached patience and pleaded with him to focus less on obsessing about victories and avoid getting down on himself. He posted a 66 to move to 12 under par, and that left him one stroke behind Koepka at the time he finished his round.

Koepka won't be anonymous.

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