Woodland wins 119th U.S. Open for first major championship

Gary Woodland posses with the trophy after winning the U.S. Open Championship golf tournament Sunday, June 16, 2019, in Pebble Beach, Calif. (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster)
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(WIBW) -- Despite a hefty push by two-time defending champion Brooks Koepka, Topeka native Gary Woodland held on for the win in Sunday's final round of the 119th U.S. Open.

The victory was Woodland's first major championship.

The former KU golfer took the lead on Friday, marking the second time in the last four majors Woodland led after 36 holes. He then held onto the lead after Saturday's round three.

Woodland began the day with a one-stroke lead (-11) over Justin Rose (-10) and a four-stroke lead over Koepka (-7).

Koepka made a strong push with four birdies on the front nine and one on the back nine to trail Woodland by two strokes into the final three holes.

Woodland began the day with birdies on holes two and three to move to 13-under par, bogeyed the ninth and 12th holes then birdied the 14th and 18th to finish at 13-under 271.

Before the 2019 U.S. Open, Woodland's best finish in the tournament was tied for 23rd and his best round was 66.

Woodland tied the U.S. Open record at Pebble Beach with a score of 65 on Friday after Justin Rose broke the record the day before. His 9-under 133 after Friday's round also beat the 36-hole record at Pebble Beach by one shot that was set by Tiger Woods in 2000.