Brooks Koepka caps a record week with US Open title

Xander Schauffele waves on the sixth hole during the second round of the U.S. Open golf tournament Friday

Xander Schauffele waves on the sixth hole during the second round of the U.S. Open golf tournament Friday

He took his chances when they were there (birdies on the first two holes, some of the easiest of the day), made par when that's all there was (when the wind gusted through the middle of his round) and finally stepped on the gas at 14 when the wind died down.

Harman, bidding to become the first left-hander to win a U.S. Open, is a victor on the PGA Tour this year while Thomas is the world number 13, a three-time victor this season and a member of the exclusive "59" club after breaking 60 at the Sony Open this year.

Brooks Koepka poses with the winning trophy after the U.S. Open golf tournament Sunday, June 18, 2017, at Erin Hills in Erin, Wis. It's the first time that has happened since 1998-2000. That was a big plus for me.

Although he suffered a three-putt bogey on the 10th - his only three-putt of the championship - Koepka took control coming in with birdies on the Par 5 14th, getting up and down from a greenside trap, the 15th from 12 feet and the 16th from 15 feet.

But Koepka would not be blown off course producing a near-flawless final round, subduing the winds with a mix of power and precision.

Jason Day had two triple bogeys and posted a 79, his worst score ever in the U.S. Open. I think that was the difference.

Koepka was one of the better young golfers on the PGA Tour without a major title on his resume. For some reason I just wanted to get out and go home.

Prior to Sunday, Koepka's only win on the PGA Tour came in 2015 at the Waste Management Phoenix Open.

Adam Scott (72-75) on Tuesday: "Obviously, I've seen guys talking about the rough and the hay and this and that, and of course it's a huge penalty if you miss big this week".

Having spent a good part of his golfing apprenticeship traveling the globe sleeping in cars and working his way up through the European minor tour, Koepka now steps into the USA sporting spotlight.

"Yeah, I mean there's probably not that much that's that interesting to be honest", said Koepka.

Emotion? The most he displayed was a light fist pump, his hand clenched a little tighter with each birdie, and a double fist pump on the 18th when he tapped in for par. "So it was pretty cool to get that, and to play well today on top of it was extra special". He got off to the ideal start with a two-putt birdie on the par-5 first and a tee shot just short of the green on the 338-yard second hold, leading to a simple up-and-down for another birdie. Johnson was scheduled to join Koepka in playing a Wednesday practice round with Scheffler before this year's U.S. Open, but after his wife, Paulina, had a baby on Monday, Johnson got to Erin Hills late and his practice schedule changed.

Harman's challenge ran out of steam on the final hole and the left-handed ended up with a bogey on the 18th to share second place with the Japanese star.

"I came out this week (tied for) 35th place", Putnam said. Then Johnson went out and won the thing and is now the No. 1-ranked player in the world. "Just the [sectional] qualifier, itself, was a huge thing for me - just that I made it".

Fowler finished tied for 11th at the Masters and sounded satisfied with his 10-under total at Erin Hills.

While he faded on the back nine, he carded a level par round of 72 to finish fourth. "I was just trying to show what we have in some spots".

"I just didn't have it today", said Thomas, who is part of the Jupiter crowd that plays together, a group that includes Koepka, Johnson and Fowler.

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