It's Championship Sunday at Erin Hills! We're still buzzing about Saturday's record-breaking round from Justin Thomas, whose legendary 9-under 63 provided highlight after highlight, capped off by the ultra-impressive eagle (3-wood, 3-wood, holed putt) on the 667-yard 18th hole. But just as Thomas kept repeating in interviews after his round, his ultimate goal is winning the 117th U.S. Open -- and yes, his third-round 63 will go down in the record books, but it'll have an exclamation point if he can win today. Thing is, it's a crowded leader board with a ton of great players in the final pairings. Follow all of Sunday's action here:
7:55 PM (EDT): With a par on the 72nd hole, Brooks Koepka is in the clubhouse at 16-under -- tying Rory McIlroy's 72-hole scoring record from Congressional in 2011. The 27-year-old has inked his name in the record books with his first major title.
This was a spectacular display by Koepka, who only missed 10 greens in regulation all week. That's an amazing stat.
Not only did he drive it incredibly at Erin Hills, but it was a complete game that led the 27-year-old to his first major title.
Putting the final scores in perspective:
If Koepka's caddie, Ricky Elliott, gets the typical 10-percent of Koepka's check -- he could buy a lot of Heineken.
7:46 PM (EDT): How about this big-time tee shot at the 72nd hole? With a 3-wood!? Absolute insanity. He's going to have an iron into the par-5 18th hole.
7:41 PM (EDT): A crucial holed six-footer for par by Brooks Koepka sends him to the 18th hole leading by three shots after a birdie by Brian Harman at 16. A par at the par-5 18th hole, playing one of the easiest holes of the day, should give Koepka his first major title. And a birdie will put him in a tie with Rory McIlroy for the 72-hole scoring record at the U.S. Open
7:27 PM (EDT): That might be the icing on the cake for Brooks Koepka. Thats three birdies in a row for Koepka -- and pored it into the dead center of the cup -- to get to 16-under. Make that a FOUR-shot lead with two holes to play for Koepka.
The trophy-engraver might start putting his tools to use.
7:17 PM (EDT): Brooks Koepka is making this look easy! The bomber just birdied the toughest hole of the day -- the 15th -- to take a three-shot lead into the 16th hole.
Brian Harman just added a birdie at the 14th hole to keep pace, but this is looking like Koepka's tournament to win.
Koepka has a chance to threaten Rory McIlroy's scoring record from Congressional (17-under). We could see more history fall just yet at Erin Hills, though it's not a given yet -- despite what Wikipedia says.
7:02 PM (EDT): Make that a two-shot lead over Hideki Matsuyama for Brooks Koepka after a birdie on the par-5 14th hole. Brian Harman just bogeyed the 13th hole, meaning he's now three back of Koepka.
6:58 PM (EDT): What a final round by Hideki Matsuyama! The World No. 4 just completed a Sunday 66 with a birdie at the 18th hole to post 12-under par. That'll put some extra pressure on Brooks Koepka and Brian Harman as they come into the final stretch. Matsuyama just posted a Sunday round to remember with that birdie putt.
6:46 PM (EDT): The first bogey of the day for Harman -- and his first bogey on the back nine the whole week -- drops the former Georgia Bulldog to one back of Brooks Koepka. The left-hander found the heavy fescue with his tee shot, then faced a tough blind third shot that came up short of the green. That's his first blunder all day.
6:30 PM (EDT): Hideki Matsuyama's charge continues at the 16th hole -- rolling in an 11-footer for a birdie to negate a bogey at 15. He's now two back of Koepka and Harman.
If Matsuyama can do something special on the 18th hole, that'll put some real pressure on the leaders as they play the last couple holes.
Meanwhile, Rickie Fowler bogeyed the 12th hole to fall three shots back. He's even-par now for the day.
6:20 PM (EDT): There's a missed opportunity for Koepka, missing a nine-footer for birdie that would've given him the outright lead. He remains tied for the lead with Brian Harman, who taps in for par on the 10th hole.
6:07 PM (EDT): Brooks Koepka hadn't made a bogey on the back nine all week as he pegged it on the 10th hole. And from the back of the green, Koepka just three-putted to fall back into a tie of the lead with Brian Harman. And Hideki Matsuyama just added a third birdie in his last four holes to move to two back of the leaders. Anything can still happen on this inward nine.
6:00 PM (EDT): The leaders are all on the back nine now, and Brooks Koepka's lead is one shot after a gutsy par putt from Brian Harman on the ninth hole. That was a heck of a two-putt, holing a 7-footer to turn in 35.
The casual golf fan might've expected Harman to falter while he was in the lead, but the guy has serious grit and he's a veteran to these type of situations, back to junior golf and contending in a handful of PGA Tour events. He's been tough all Sunday.
5:51 PM (EDT): Koepka makes the turn in 33 to take a one shot lead into the back nine. These numbers bode quite well for the 26-year-old.
5:38 PM (EDT): Brooks Koepka has played near flawless golf thus far on Sunday -- rolling in his third birdie of the front nine at the eighth hole -- this one a 33-foot long-distance bomb to take sole possession of the lead. Brian Harman is one back.
Meanwhile, World No. 4 Hideki Matsuyama is making his run -- birdieing 11 and 12 to move to 10-under. Don't count out this world-class player.
5:23 PM (EDT): That's a clutch up and down from Rickie Fowler at the eighth hole to stay two back of Koepka's and Harman's lead. The 28-year-old is looking for his first major, but he has more experience in these spots than anyone at the top of the leader board.
Also, this might sum up Justin Thomas' Sunday so far. Not many would've expected him to be a non-factor this early:
5:04 PM (EDT): Things are going south quickly for Justin Thomas. Golf's a funny game isn't it? The guy couldn't miss yesterday, and he's already dropped three shots in five holes today -- he's five back of Brooks Koepka and Brian Harman now.
4:36 PM (EDT): What a putt by Brian Harman! The gritty 30-year-old just pored in a bomb at the third hole -- 29 feet -- to retake a share of the lead with Koepka. As you've heard, Harman would be the first left-handed champion of the U.S. Open in 117 years if he could win.
4:22 PM (EDT): Justin Thomas is off to a slow start on Sunday after that sensational Saturday, dropping a shot at the second hole after his wedge shot flew the green. Not a good way to start the round, but he's still just two back of Koepka. Very much in the mix.
4:12 PM (EDT): Two holes, two birdies for Brooks Koepka. The bomber has it to 13-under and has the lead by himself after that start.
Tommy Fleetwood, Koepka's playing partner, also birdied to move to 12-under. He's tied at -12 with Harman, who just made a gutsy par at No. 1. Justin Thomas also tapped in for par after missing a 20+-foot birdie putt.
3:59 PM (EDT): Brooks Koepka slipped in a birdie putt for a two-putt that gives him a share of the lead with Brian Harman, who has his work cut out for him to scramble at the first hole.
3:54 PM (EDT): The final pairing of the day is out on the course. Justin Thomas found trouble with his tee shot, overcooking it way left. And Brian Harman's ball went way right into the thick rough.
Some nerves? That'd be understandable.
Meanwhile, Rickie Fowler missed a putt inside five feet for another birdie on the second hole. He remains one back of Harman's lead with a missed opportunity there at No. 2
3:45 PM (EDT): Rickie Fowler just dropped a 17-footer at the first hole to make an opening birdie -- moving him to one back of Brian Harman's lead.
The first hole has been a birdie hole all week, but less so today with the hole playing straight into the wind.
3:34 PM (EDT): One of the highlights of the afternoon just came from Brendan Steele, with this sporty eagle. Steele is now 8-under and four shots off the lead after this dunk:
3:20 PM (EDT): Patrick Reed and Russell Henley have teed off on their opening rounds. Both have the firepower to threathen the lead today, though the conditions might hamper their ability to go too low. Nevertheless, Henley and Reed are two to watch from the outer reaches of the final pairings.
Want a quick catch-up of what you've missed if you're just turning into the coverage? Here's a good video:
2:47 PM (EDT): The best round of the day is in the clubhouse; Jordan Spieth birdied the 18th hole to shoot a 3-under 69. It'll be a disappointing week for the 2015 U.S. Open champion, but he can take some momentum to the rest of the season after this stellar round.
Though the windy conditions might've lessen just a bit, there are still only seven players under-par.
And one of those, Jordan is officially carded.
2:12 PM (EDT): Scottie Scheffler and Cameron Champ are both making names for themselves this week. Scheffler has a heckuva round going today -- and Champ is turning heads for his incredible distance off the tee.
Now they're in a battle for low amateur.
1:39 PM (EDT): Out of the nearly 40 players on the course right now, there are only FIVE players under-par in their rounds:
--Jordan Spieth (2-under through 13, 2-over for the tournament)
--Matt Kuchar (1-under through 3, 2-under for the tournament)
--Andrew "Beef" Johnston (1-under through 4, 2-under for the tournament)
--Kevin Chappell (1-under through 2, 3-under for the tournament)
--Jack Maguire (1-under through 3, 3-under for the tournament)
That's it. The wind is seeing this golf course play much differently than the past three days.
And here's some of the carnage happening on the course:
1:29 PM (EDT): This tweet puts Justin Thomas' round in perspective by the numbers. Of course, you need to see the shots Thomas played to fully appreciate how good his 9-under 63 was.
12:45 PM (EDT): Besides the weather, one of the things on our mind early on Sunday at Erin Hills is Arnold Palmer. The King's comeback to win the 1960 U.S. Open at Cherry Hills was one of the epic performances in this championship, and to commemorative the 57th anniversary since his victory, and this being the first U.S. Open since Arnie's passing, the USGA is honoring him in proper fashion.
Every fan will get a commemorative pin upon walking on the grounds of Erin Hills, as our Ryan Herrington reports. And the flag on the 18th hole will feature the silhouette of Arnie tossing his visor after capping off his final round at Cherry Hills.
12:20 PM (EDT): The wind is finally blowing at Erin Hills like many expected it would this week. And the scores are reflective of that. The scoring average on the front nine so far? Over 41. Yes, 41 -- that's more than 5-over-par. Not quite the scoring conditions we've seen all week at Erin Hills.
The round of the day so far? None other than Jordan Spieth. He is one of only three players under-par right now (2-under through 8), showing some nice grit on a tough week thus far for the 2015 U.S. Open champion.
William McGirt has the second-best round at 1-under par through nine. Other than that, there are more bogeys than birdies being made. Buckle up -- Erin Hills is showing its teeth thus far on Sunday.
7:40 PM (EDT): For all the talk about the length of Erin Hills and how long hitters would have a field day on this large field with huge fairways, it's time to appreciate the diminutive left-handed Brian Harman, who cards a third-round 67 to take a one-shot lead after 54 holes.
Though today will be remembered for Justin Thomas' record-breaking 9-under 63 (and rightfully so), you need to applaud Harman's stellar play this week. That was Harman's second 67 of the week (67-70-67) to grab the lead by himself.
7:32 PM (EDT): It had been a marvelous display all day by Tommy Fleetwood -- sitting at 5-under for the day sitting 70 yards away on the 18th hole. But before his third shot came up short, he then putted off the green -- and had to get up and down for bogey. Never a good thing when you're grabbing a wedge after the putter is in hand. It might've been a momentum-killing bogey, but the 6 also could've been a worse score.
Fleetwood's playing competitor, Brooks Koepka, almost poured in an eagle putt on 18 but left it short. His birdie brings Koepka to 11-under, another strong round by the long-hitting American. He'll be in one of the final groups tomorrow once again as he pursues his major breakthrough.
7:17 PM (EDT): It wasn't quite the 9-under 63 that his best buddy Justin Thomas carded. But Rickie Fowler carded a strong 4-under 68 on Saturday to sit two back of the current lead. Will this be Rickie's time at a major? He's among the many within earshot of the lead looking for their breakthrough.
7:10 PM (EDT): Pars from Tommy Fleetwood and Brooks Koepka send them to 18 -- Fleetwood tied for the lead at 12-under and Koepka at 10-under.
And up ahead, Rickie Fowler hit a poor drive on the 18th hole finding the fairway bunker, and so he's scrambling to get in the clubhouse at 10-under.
Wondering how Brian Harman, not one of the longest hitters on tour, has contended at Erin Hills? Some launch-monitor numbers can help explain:
6:46 PM (EDT): Rickie Fowler has gotten back in the thick of things -- draining a 10-footer to get to 4-under on the day, and 10-under for the tournament, two back of Tommy Fleetwood now.
6:43 PM (EDT): Though unexperienced to the heat of contending in a major, Tommy Fleetwood has had a fantastic day thus far -- and another birdie, this one at the 15th, gives Fleetwood the lead by himself at 11-under. The European is 5-under for the day playing with Brooks Koepka in one of the final groups on Saturday and has been steady all day.
Who is this Englishman who's playing so well?
Just like Fleetwood, Brian Harman has also quietly had a fantastic day. The diminutive lefty just drained a birdie putt at the 14th hole to be one back of Fleetwood along with Thomas.
6:20 PM (EDT): Rickie Fowler (remember when he was leading?) birdies the par-5 14th hole to get back to eight under and within striking distance. Meanwhile, Russell Henley (67) and Charley Hoffman (68) wrap up their rounds to finish at eight under.
6:15 PM (EDT): Brendan Steele was cruising along at nine under, but one loose iron shot reminded everyone that Erin Hills, despite yielding plenty of low scores, can still bite you. Steele pushed his approach slightly right on No. 17 and it rolled into a collection area. After his first attempted pitch ended up back at his feet, he walked away with a deflating double bogey.
5:55 PM (EDT): The reaction to Justin Thomas' record-breaking 9-under-par 63 is deservedly overwhelming the conversation at Erin Hills (Justin Thomas is the No. 1 trending topic on Twitter right now in the United States).
Johnny Miller is bound to be trending, too. Is this the Crying Johnny?
When you're one of nine golfers in PGA Show history to shoot a 59, and you can argue that it's not your best round ever, you know you've arrived.
This about sums it up.
One thing's for sure: It's the best round ever carded by someone wearing pink pants.
5:27 PM (EDT): Never a doubt! Justin Thomas pores his putt for 63 into the bottom of the cup. Yes, that was the best round in U.S. Open history. The 24-year-old played lights-out all day. The crazy thing? He had two bogeys in the round to go along with nine birdies and an eagle.
Thomas leads by two (73-69-63).
5:18 PM (EDT): It's hard to put into words how good of a golf shot Justin Thomas just hit at the 18th hole. So we'll just let the video do the talking:
He has an eight-footer to shoot 9-under, which would be the best score in relation to par in U.S. Open history -- for a 63.
5:05 PM (EDT): Yeah, Patrick Reed's third-round 65 was impressive. But another young American star could do one better.
Justin Thomas has put on a heckuva performance thus far on Saturday at Erin Hills. And with a birdie at the par-5 18th hole, he could tie Johnny Miller's U.S. Open-record round of 8-under (a 63, this is a par 72 at Erin Hills).
Here's the putt he made on 17 -- the latest in a seemingly never-ending line of highlights for JT today.
4:35 PM (EDT): Justin Thomas hits his tee shot on the drivable par-4 15th hole to six feet. Even more spectacular was what he said to his golf ball when it was in the air: "BE AS GOOD AS YOU LOOK!" Move over, Hal Sutton, your "Be the right club today!" was just topped.
Unfortunately, JT missed the ensuing eagle putt, but his tap-in birdie gave him a share of the lead at eight under.
4:21 PM (EDT): Even with a missed five-footer for birdie on the 18th hole, Patrick Reed carded a sensational 65 on Saturday to get right into the mix. Sure it could've been even better, but the five-time PGA Tour winner is in his best position ever to win a major -- he finishes his third round one shot off the lead, and with a Charley Hoffman bogey on No. 10, Reed is now tied for the lead with his 65. Tremendous.
And yes, if he had holed that five-foot birdie putt, he would've tied a U.S. Open record you might've heard about:
The biggest move thus far on Moving Day.
4:05 PM (EDT): Another flat-brim hat-wearing pro is alone at the top of the U.S. Open: Charley Hoffman has a one-shot lead over the rest of the pack after his fourth birdie of the day at the eighth hole.
Hoffman has already separated himself from the pack at the year's first major of the year -- holding the 36-hole lead at the Masters. Though he hold onto that lead, the California native is putting together here on the weekend thus far.
3:46 PM (EDT): This might not be your typical U.S. Open with the "defense of par," but I think we can agree: This is must-watch TV with all of these low numbers. The lead continues to increase seemingly by the minute. There are some seriously low scores out here at Erin Hills on Saturday -- we have six players at the moment at 8-under: Paul Casey, Brooks Koepka, Charley Hoffman, Patrick Reed, Tommy Fleetwood and Brian Harman.
The scoreboard operators have their hands full right now. Birdies continue to drop -- and don't expect that to stop any time soon.
And those numbers don't include the world-class players just back of the lead: Rickie Fowler, Justin Thomas, Hideki Matsuyama (two back).
3:34 PM (EDT): Does Patrick Reed have some good mojo by virtue of his pants? Reed has the best round of the day going after a birdie at the 16th hole, and yes, his pants might be part of the charm of his day.
It looks like Reed is wearing the same pair of pants he wore at the Ryder Cup. Of course he did. Patty Reed is the undisputed American Ryder Cup assassin from the past two Cups. And he's channeling that USA mojo with his Saturday attire -- and his lights-out round.
3:23 PM (EDT): Rickie Fowler has re-captured the lead with a birdie at the first hole. We have seven players at 7-under to tie for the lead. This should be an exciting couple of hours at Erin Hills.
3:10 PM (EDT): Justin Thomas not only provided the highlight of the afternoon thus far, but he's making bigger headlines for his front nine on Saturday. The 24-year-old rolled in his sixth (SIXTH!) birdie putt to complete his outward nine at Erin Hills to tie the lead.
Thomas turned in 31 (he bogeyed the fourth hole), but you get a feeling the three-time tour winner this season isn't going to slow down anytime soon. We know how low JT can go, seeing his 59 earlier in the year at the Sony Open.
3:02 PM (EDT): Big moves are happening on Moving Day just as the leaders are making their way to the first tee. Louis Oosthuizen and Justin Thomas have both made birdies to get to 6-under, which is currently one off the lead. Thomas is making the turn, and Oosthuizen has three holes to play.
2:45 PM (EDT): The U.S. Ryder Cup hero is making a big move thus far at his country's national championship. Following a pitch-in at the eighth hole, Patrick Reed just chipped in at No. 12.
The guy's en fuego. Watch out, Erin, Wisconsin.
Meanwhile, Justin Thomas has added ANOTHER birdie at the eighth hole to join Patrick Reed at 5-under. The young American stars are now both two back of the lead.
2:17 PM (EDT): After a bogey on the fourth hole, Justin Thomas responded with a birdie on No. 5 to get back to four under. And not just any birdie. Watch Thomas aim away from the hole and let the slope do the rest:
1:47 PM (EDT): Patrick Reed pitches in on the par-4 eighth hole for a third consecutive birdie to get to three under on the round and four under overall. Meanwhile, Justin Thomas gets off to a great start of his own by birdieing the first two holes to also get to four under. Andrew "Beef" Johnston takes advantage of Erin Hills' opening par 5 and short par 4 to do the same. Suddenly, there are 22 players within three shots of the lead.
1:32 PM (EDT): Louis Oosthuizen goes out in 32 to climb to within three shots of the leaders. Oosthuizen began the tournament with a bushy beard -- and a 74. But after shaving (Somewhere, the ghost of Ben Hogan nodded in approval), the 2010 British Open champ shot 70 on Friday and is climbing the leader board on Saturday.
1:28 PM (EDT): 2014 U.S. Open champ Martin Kaymer tees off. At three under, he's tied with Sergio Garcia as the low major champs entering the weekend. Garcia, the reigning Masters champ, tees off in the next group.