Koepka beats Tiger by 2 shots in 100th PGA

Brooks Koepka never lost his cool or his lead when they all came at him, including Tiger Woods, Adam Scott of Australia and defending champion Justin Thomas.

The 28-year-old Koepka shared the lead with Scott before making two late birdies to close with a 4-under-par 66 and capture the 100th PGA Championship by two strokes over Woods at Bellerive Country Club in St. Louis.

Koepka, who missed the Masters this year because of a wrist injury that required surgery in January, has claimed the last two U.S. Opens and won three of the last seven majors.

“On the beginning of the back nine when Tiger and Adam made their runs, I could hear the roars, and it was fun,” said Koepka, whose only other PGA Tour victory other than his three majors came in the 2015 Waste Management Phoenix Open. “I don’t know what it is, but the majors get my attention and my focus is there on every shot. I have to take that into regular Tour events.

“To go from not being sure if and when I was going to play again this season to (winning two majors) is just mind-boggling.”

Koepka, who will climb from fourth in the World Golf Rankings this week, finished with a PGA record total of 16-under 264 in winning the Wanamaker Trophy.

Woods, a four-time PGA champion regaining his form after four back surgeries, scrambled early but capped a 6-under-par 64 with a 19-foot birdie putt on the last hole, while Scott closed out a 67 with a bogey on No. 18 and was three shots behind in third.

“It was a lot of fun, especially since I contended in the last two majors, and a year ago I never thought I would be here again,” said Woods, who tied for sixth in the Open Championship last month at Carnoustie.

“It was a bit of a struggle on the front nine, but I found something on the back and it got me through. The fans were so positive all week and I can’t thank them enough as I came back and tried to win another major championship.”

Stewart Cink, 45, shot 67 and was five down in a tie for fourth with seventh-ranked Jon Rahm of Spain, who totaled 68, while the second-ranked Thomas stumbled with two bogeys late in a 68 and was another stroke back in a tie for sixth with sixth-ranked Francesco Molinari (67) of Italy, Thomas Pieters (66) of Belgium, and Gary Woodland (69), who led after each of the first two rounds.

Rafa Cabrera Bello of Spain and Tyrrell Hatton of England were seven shots back in a tie for 10th after recording bogey-free 64s.

Eighth-ranked Jordan Spieth, who could have completed the Career Grand Slam with a victory, shot 66 to finish in a tie for 12th that included ninth-ranked Rickie Fowler of Murrieta, who closed with a 71.

Third-ranked Justin Rose of England posted a 68 to wind up in a tie for 19th that included 10th-ranked Jason Day of Australia, who had a 71, while top-ranked Dustin Johnson tied for 27th after a 69, and fifth-ranked Rory McIlroy carded a 70 to tie for 50th.

For complete results, visit https://www.pgatour.com/leaderboard.html

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.