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A L BA N Y, BA H A M A S

B R O O K

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2016

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KOEPKA South Florida native Brooks Koepka and part of golf’s rising class of 20-somethings, returns to Albany and the Hero World Challenge after recording a strong PGA TOUR season with four top-five finishes including a pair of runner-ups at the AT&T Byron Nelson and FedEx St. Jude Classic. At the AT&T Byron Nelson in Texas, Koepka shot 15-under 266 to set up his first playoff on the Tour against Sergio Garcia. Unfortunately, Koepka’s double-bogey was no competition for Garcia’s par. Koepka, a two-time Atlantic Coast Golfer of the Year at Florida State University, actually entered the final round with a two-stroke lead over Jordan Spieth (marking his first-ever final-round PGA TOUR lead), but his 1-over 71 opened the door to Garcia’s comeback win. Koepka got his second consecutive runner-up finish in his next start at the St. Jude Classic, highlighted by a second-round, bogey-free 65. Koepka’s 10-under 270 for the tournament, three strokes behind winner Daniel Berger, was Koepka’s second consecutive near victory at TPC Southwind. He placed tied for third the previous year. After qualifying for the U.S. Open as an amateur in 2012 and missing the cut at 77-77, Koepka elected to turn pro and joined the European Challenge Tour where he quickly made a name for himself with two top-10 finishes before his breakthrough win at the Challenge de Catalunya, overtaking Alessandro Tadini by three shots with a final-round 65. This week, Koepka is eager to better his inaugural Hero World Challenge last year, when he shot 18-under 270 for a solo seventh-place finish and best performance among the three players making their Hero World Challenge debuts.

B I R T H P L AC E : W E S T PA L M B E AC H , F LO R I DA , U S A

AG E

26

TURNED PRO

2012

TO U R WINS

1

HERO WORLD CHALLENGE MAGAZINE

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53


2016 Hero World Challenge