USGA pledges to soften Shinnecock for final round of U.S. Open

Photo of USGA pledges to soften Shinnecock for final round of U.S. Open
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SOUTHAMPTON, N.Y. (AP) The water hoses were out early Sunday for the final round of the U.S. Open in its attempt to slightly soften Shinnecock Hills.

USGA officials have conceded that wind and dry conditions made the third round tougher than it needed to be. Tony Finau and Daniel Berger started the weekend 11 shots out of the lead. They go into the final day tied for the lead with Dustin Johnson and defending champion Brooks Koepka.

That set the stage for a final round in which 15 players were separated by four shots.

Koepka has a chance to become the first back-to-back winner of the U.S. Open since Curtis Strange in 1989.

Among those playing early was Phil Mickelson, who purposely struck a moving ball on the 13th green Saturday.

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