Brooks Koepka ties PGA Championship record with 7-under 63

Streeter Lecka/PGA of America

Brooks Koepka ties PGA Championship record with 7-under 63

PGA Tour

Brooks Koepka ties PGA Championship record with 7-under 63

ST. LOUIS – Brooks Koepka’s round was just about done, and he took a good, long look at his 19-foot birdie putt on nine.

He couldn’t get it to go and finished with par, and spotted Rickie Fowler as he walked off course.

“Do you know what (that putt) was for?” Fowler asked.

That birdie putt would have made Koepka just the second player ever to shoot 62 at a major, and he settled for a 63 to tie for the lowest round in PGA Championship history. Later in the morning wave, Charl Schwartzel matched that mark.

“I didn’t even think of it,” Koepka said. “I’ve been so in the zone you don’t know where you are or what you’re at.”

Everyone else was taking notice as Koepka charged up the leaderboard Friday morning, moving to 8 under for the week and just two shots back of outright leader Gary Woodland.

Koepka arrived at Bellerive on Monday morning and played nine holes each day leading up. He slowly shifted into major mode and said team members have told him he turns into a different person at these events.

“More mentally focused,” Koepka said. “Every shot really, really means something. You drop a shot or two you really put yourself back. … It’s very down to a routine this week and other weeks sometimes, not saying I vary from the routine, but it’s much more disciplined. Eating right, going to the gym, it’s almost timed perfectly.”

Koepka teed off at No. 10 and opened with three routine pars. Then he put it into high gear. He stuck his approach inside 5 feet at the par-3 13th for his first birdie of the day and added two more birdie putts at 15 and 17, both inside 5 feet as well.

A 3-under 32 on his front nine put the back-to-back U.S. Open champ right in the mix after a quiet 1-under 69 in Round 1.

With a slew of guys putting up low scores in the morning, Koepka continued to charge up the leaderboard with birdies at Nos. 1, 2 and 3.

He didn’t make a single putt longer than 10 feet and still shot in the low 60s, a pretty strong indication that the swing is feeling good and there’s more to come over the weekend.

Koepka missed the Masters in April due to a wrist injury, bouncing back to win the U.S. Open two months later at Shinnecock. Now he has a chance to make it two out of three majors.

“Any time you can win two majors in a year, that’s pretty unique, pretty special,” Koepka said. “Especially with where I started the season. Missing the Masters and only being able to play three this year is quite disappointing, but I’m trying to make the most of it.”

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