WiretoWire: Brooks wins PGA, Block wins hearts
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Written by Staff @PGATOUR
Brooks Koepka looked like he was going to take command of the PGA Championship after he made three consecutive birdies early in Sunday’s final round. Instead, his hot start set the stage for a dramatic duel that lasted much of the final round at Oak Hill Country Club. Koepka, who began Sunday with a one-shot lead, pulled three ahead with birdies on Nos. 2-4. But he had to hold off a determined Viktor Hovland to win his fifth major and third PGA Championship. It wasn’t until a three-shot swing on the 16th hole that Koepka’s victory at Oak Hill seemed certain. That put him four shots ahead with two holes remaining. Koepka went on to win by two, shooting a final-round 67 to finish at 9-under 271. Hovland finished second, as did Scottie Scheffler. “This is probably the sweetest one of them all because of all the hard work that went into this one,” said Koepka, who had battled injuries after winning the 2019 PGA Championship, his last major title before this week. “This one is definitely special.”
It was a surreal week for 46-year-old Californian Michael Block, a PGA of America professional who captured the golf world’s imagination with his strong play and enduring authenticity in western New York. The week teetered on the absurd before fully going there with a final-round ace on the par-3 15th hole at Oak Hill, the week’s first and only ace. Playing alongside Rory McIlroy, Block carded a Sunday 71 for a T15 finish, the best showing by a club pro at the PGA since Lonnie Nielsen’s T11 in 1986. A fan deemed Block the “next mayor of Rochester,” and judging on rabid fan support that built to a crescendo Sunday afternoon, it could be a fair assumption. Block’s not done yet, either. He learned Sunday night that he’ll play the upcoming Charles Schwab Challenge on a sponsor exemption, which became available after Parker Coody withdrew Sunday evening to keep his focus on the Korn Ferry Tour. “I’m just having a good time,” Block summed up his week. “I’m going to take that same vibe to Fort Worth next week and have a good time.”
The TOUR heads back to the Lone Star State for the Charles Schwab Challenge. Sam Burns is looking for back-to-back titles, something he’s done already this year with his win at the Valspar Championship earlier in the spring. Only one golfer in tournament history has ever defended his title here – Ben Hogan, twice. The last winner at Colonial who calls Texas home was Spieth in 2016, who will be returning after dealing with a wrist injury. Other golfers with Texas ties include Longhorns Scottie Scheffler, who leads the field, and Pierceson Coody and Cole Hammer who will both play on a sponsor exemption. Michael Block, last week’s PGA professional who stole the show at Oak Hill will tee it up again on a sponsor exemption. Other big names in the field include Max Homa, Tony Finau, Collin Morikawa, and Viktor Hovland. Akshay Bhatia, who earned Special Temporary Membership earlier this season, will be teeing it up as well as Min Woo Lee, who is inching closer to Special Temporary Membership.
VIDEO OF THE WEEK
Michael Block dunks it for an ace at the PGA Championship
“I don’t play for world ranking. I play to come out here and compete. Right now I’m a little sad that I didn’t get the tournament done, but I’m proud of how I fought.” – Scottie Scheffler, who returned to world No. 1 with a runner-up finish at the PGA Championship
BY THE NUMBERS
4.519 - The sixth hole at Oak Hill Country Club played to a scoring average of 0.519 over par across all four rounds, becoming the hardest hole in
1 - Grayson Murray, a previous winner on both the PGA TOUR and Korn Ferry Tour, won the AdventHealth Championship by a stroke over Wilson Furr and Rico Hoey, despite a double bogey on the 72nd hole.
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