Koepka survives Fleetwood challenge, wins 2nd straight US Open

Doug Mendoza
June 18, 2018

Because, in truth, the U.S. Open he won at Erin Hills a year ago and the one he locked up Sunday at Shinnecock Hills could have not have been more different.

Daniel Berger managed to hit a sweet spot that was even smaller than the target area on one of Shinnecock Hills' glassy greens: He played well enough to make the cut at the U.S. Open, but not so well that he teed off among the leaders after the course turned treacherous late in the day. "I didn't know if there was something I didn't know about him or what, but people were screaming for him a lot and it just got louder and louder throughout the round - it was pretty fun".

His victory Sunday might not have been possible if not for grinding out a 72 on Saturday in conditions so severe the last 45 players to tee off in the third round didn't break par.

In 2016 the USGA returned to a traditional course and set up at Oakmont Country Club, but disgraced itself by mismanaging a ruling during Johnson's final round.

There seems no question of Tommy Fleetwood fretting over what might have been.

"The shot you would look at is the putt at the last obviously but I shot seven under and tied the lowest round in US Open history", Fleetwood said.

Fleetwood's second-place finish came off a round in which he did what he always does when his game is humming. Only five players had ever shot a 63 before in the major known as "golf's ultimate test", until the Englishman switched on his heroics.

If our calculations are correct, we're figuring Rovell is using saying what Finau would have pocketed if he shot par on the last hole and was +3 for the tournament instead of +5. He finished at 2 over and stood one shot out of the lead as he walked off the course.

Last fall Koepka began feeling discomfort in his left wrist. "Similar to the preparation we took for round 1, green speeds will be, on average, 10-12 inches slower than rounds 2 and 3". He blasted that out to 8 feet and made the putt to keep his lead at one shot. "Because it could have been a big momentum shift there, and we could have been playing tennis just going back and forth".

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Jonathan Wall, Equipment Insider: In terms of golf history, I think it's very significant.

Started in a share at three-over, he took the lead on the back nine and cruised in, even making a long bogey putt at the 11th.

Dustin Johnson staggered around Shinnecock Hills like a punch-drunk boxer, reeling from one troubled shot to the next to the next.

"The only one I haven't figure out is Augusta - hopefully I'll figure that one out soon".

"I wanted 62", he said. "But I couldn't be happier with the way I played".

"I said to him on the range this morning, 'You were on your couch in January and February, not really knowing if you were going to be able to play here, '" Harmon said.

Koepka opened with a 75 Thursday, the highest first-round score by a US Open champion since Raymond Floyd at Shinnecock Hills in 1986. "So I felt like it was tough to get a good beat on the speed today".

Finau, who went into the final round tied for the lead, playing in the final group with Daniel Berger, shot a 2-over-par 72 to finish at 285 in fifth place, four strokes behind victor Brooks Koepka.

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