Koepka holds off Tiger for the PGA title
Brooks Koepka is impossible to overlook, winning the PGA Championship on Sunday with machine-like precision to go with his back-to-back U.S. Open titles.
And it still felt — and sounded — like he was playing second billing to Tiger Woods.
With roars for Woods, Koepka kept his cool and ran off two birdies on the back nine at Bellerive with Adam Scott tied for the lead and Woods one shot behind.
Koepka closed with a 4-under 66 for a two-shot victory, making him only the fifth player to win the U.S. Open and PGA Championship in the same year.
“The crowds here, they let you know what’s going on,” Koepka said with a big grin. “The beginning of the back nine, I could hear all the roars. When Tiger started making his little run, and Scotty made his run, it got loud.”
Even with two bogeys, Woods shot 64 for his lowest final round in a major.
After wasting one chance to put it away, Koepka ran kept attacking flags and ran in birdie putts of 10 feet on No. 15 and seven feet on No. 16 to end the drama. He tapped in for par on the final hole to set the PGA Championship scoring record at 264. It also tied the major championship record that Henrik Stenson set at Royal Troon two years ago in the British Open.
Koepka has won three of the last six majors he played, and two of three this year alone. He joined Woods, Jack Nicklaus, Ben Hogan and Gene Sarazen as the only players to win the two U.S. majors that rotate to different courses in the same year.
The 28-year-old also joined Jordan Spieth, Woods, Nicklaus and Tom Watson as the only players with three majors before turning 30 since the Second World War.
Scott hung around by making big putts and was tied for the lead until Koepka’s birdies. Scott missed a 6-foot birdie putt on the par-5 17th that would have pulled him to within one shot — right after Koepka missed from the same range — and then made bogey on the 18th for a 67 to finish alone in third.