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Bummer buddies: Roomies Fowler, Thomas fizzle at US Open

19 Juin 2017

"It looks as though the weather conditions are going to be a lot more challenging today at Erin Hills", said Tom Kite, who shot an even-par 72 in howling winds in the final round at Pebble Beach to win the 1992 U.S. Open.

"You've got to tip your cap", said Harman, who tied Matsuyama for second at 12-under.

The previous lowest score in relation to par was the eight-under 63 shot by Johnny Miller in the final round of the 1973 Open.

Brian Harman and Hideki Matsuyama tied for second 4 shots back at 12-under. He opened with a pair of tap-in birdies and putted for birdie on every hole but the par-3 13th.

HAIL THE KING: The 18th hole at Erin Hills had a special flag for the final round of the U.S. Open. He's in the British Open field and felt he'd also qualify for this season's PGA Championship. He was clutch. He made sizable putts on four successive holes-13th, 14th, 15th, and 16th, the last three being birdies-rolling the ball right in the middle of the cup every time at the ideal speed.

"I just tried to get as low as I could (on each hole) and stay focused", Koepka said.

He bogeyed the 12th and 13th holes.

Harman ended up closing with a bogey. You get a couple bogeys and all of a sudden, the gap was so big. But the back nine, just as it had been all through the tournament was Koepka's domain, and playing alongside Fleetwood - a friend from his days on the European circuit - was also a help. Today my game wasn't quite there, but still got it round in level par.

"It made me feel a lot better seeing Brooks shoot 5-under", Thomas said. "I just think Brooks went out and won the tournament".

Tied for the lead with six holes to play, Koepka, 27, holed an 8-foot par putt on No. 13 that gave him confidence with his stroke and momentum to pour in birdies on the next three holes to turn the final hour into what amounted to a runaway victory.

The winds whipped through Erin Hills on Sunday for the first time and blew away the birdie binges that had besieged the first-time major venue through three rounds. More than worrying about the uncertainty of his career, he was trying to figure a way to close one of these big ones out.

"But he just said a few things, and just stay patient".

Koepka birdied No. 1 to move into a tie with Harman for the top spot.

Koepka became the third straight American to win the title. Seven players already have reached 10 under or better this week - Koepka, Harman, Thomas, Fleetwood, Fowler, Charley Hoffman and Matsuyama.

It was an accomplishment that wasn't lost on golf's newest major champion, even if his father and other family members weren't in attendance at Erin Hills on Sunday and missed one of Koepka's appearances at a major for the first time.

Fowler gave himself a break: "You kind of have to say, 'Hey, it's a major, I played well this week"'.

"It's awesome to get the calls and texts I got last night".

Scottie Scheffler of Texas A&M outdueled his rival from the University of Texas, Cameron Champ, for low amateur honors by one stroke.

Tommy Fleetwood, who played alongside Koepka and closed with a 72 to finish fourth, played the Challenge Tour a year before Koepka arrived.

But the year's second major belonged to the young guns who tackled the longest layout ever for a U.S. Open. Only four left-handers-Bubba Watson, Phil Mickelson, Mike Weir and Bob Charles-have won major championships.

Another stellar pairing was the past three Open champions Martin Kaymer, Jordan Spieth and Dustin Johnson.

A disturbing trend, or just a rough day on the golf course?

Bummer buddies: Roomies Fowler, Thomas fizzle at US Open