Golf

Mr. 61: Kevin Na ties Colonial course record on Sunday

Kevin Na is leading Colonial after Day 1

PGA Tour player Kevin Na is leading the Colonial after firing an 8-under 62 on Thursday. But he's not getting too far ahead of himself.
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PGA Tour player Kevin Na is leading the Colonial after firing an 8-under 62 on Thursday. But he's not getting too far ahead of himself.

Kevin Na finished stronger than he even started.

He held the 18-hole lead after an 8-under 62 on Thursday, and topped that by tying the Colonial course record with a 9-under 61 on Sunday. But those two standout rounds weren't enough for Na to win the Fort Worth Invitational this year.

"I played amazing today," Na said. "I struck it beautifully. Made a ton of putts. ... Round 1 and Round 4 felt like it was 'Groundhog Day.' I actually did one better and I'm very pleased with the way I finished this week."

Na struggled in the middle rounds, posting a 3-over 73 on Friday and an even-par 70 on Saturday. He finished fourth after Sunday's remarkable round.

Justin Rose finished at 20-under after Sunday's 64 and won the tournament by three strokes over Brooks Koepka.

But Na put together the round of the day Sunday with nine birdies and no bogeys. He got off to an impressive start with birdies on two of the three holes (Nos. 3-4) on the "Horrible Horseshoe" en route to a 4-under 31 front side.

On the back, Na opened with birdies on Nos. 10-11 and Nos. 14-15. He finished impressively on No. 18, knocking his approach to within a foot.

"I had a beautiful 9-iron, drew it in there," Na said of his approach.

As stated, the 61 ties the course record. It's the first time a player has posted that score on the final day in 15 years. Justin Leonard did it in 2003, joining Lee Janzen in 1993 as the only players to do so.

Somewhat ironically, none of the three ended up winning the tournament. But Na is still in line for his best finish at Colonial.

Going into this year, Na's previous best finish was a T9 in 2009. Even though the course record didn't lead to a win, Na is hoping it leads to at least something more.

"Definitely trending the right way," Na said, "and hopefully this week gets me into the U.S. Open."

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