After a stunning defeat, Brooks Koepka made a 9-year-old boy’s Masters

Brooks Koepka

Brooks Koepka on Sunday on the 18th green at Augusta National.

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AUGUSTA, Ga. — Brooks Koepka is a softy. Really. 

His wife says so. You may not see it, you may not hear it, but chisel past the gruff, and it’s there. 

“He really is a vulnerable person,” Jena Sims told GOLF’s Claire Rogers earlier this week, in response to a question about their appearance on Netflix’s Full Swing golf docuseries.

“Like, he’s emotionally intelligent. I think that the world kind of views him as this tough guy with a chip on his shoulder, and Netflix really opened up his heart.”

Edwin Platt knows it, too. Sunday was the test, though. 

Koepka had started Sunday with a four-shot lead at the Masters. He ended it with a four-shot loss. In between, Koepka bogeyed 12 to start his weather-delayed third round at Augusta National. He bogeyed 17. To start his final round, he bogeyed 4, 6, 9 and 12. And things were essentially over. Jon Rahm became your winner, and Koepka made his way up a path behind the 18th green. He was done.

Platt was there. He was stationed right by the rope, about a short pitch shot away from the hole. His dad, Hep, was nearby. 

We’ll let him take over from here. The 9-year-old from Aiken, South Carolina, is as polite as they come. 

Did you wave at him? How did that go?

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“I kind of waved at him.”

Did he make eye contact with you?

“Yes, sir.” 

Koepka, after a final-round 75, after a Masters collapse, had tossed him his gamer golf ball. 

How hard was it to catch the ball?

“Oh, not that hard.”

Not very hard? Really? I would have struggled with it. You caught it with one hand, or two?


You have a couple golf balls, don’t you?

“Yes, sir.” 

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How many?


From who else?

“Xander Schauffele.” 

When did you catch that one?

“Just a little bit ago.” 

Do you think it’s pretty cool despite Brooks’ struggles today for him to single you out and give you the golf ball? That was pretty neat, huh?

“Yes, sir.” 

Dad, is that something he’ll remember for a long time?

“Oh yeah, for a long time.” 

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I want to ask you what kind of gesture that was. Brooks kind of struggled today. For him to do that …

“Yeah, even during the struggles, just remembering the kids are the future of the game, trying to get them hooked early.” 

Back to Edwin.

Did you have fun at the Masters?

“Yes, sir.” 

Is this your first one?

“No, sir.” 

How many times have you come?


When was the last time?

“Last year.” 

This is my second, too. I came here last year for the first time, too. Where are you guys from?

‘Aiken, South Carolina.”

Thank you for your time.

You’re welcome.

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Nick Piastowski

Nick Piastowski Editor

Nick Piastowski is a Senior Editor at and Golf Magazine. In his role, he is responsible for editing, writing and developing stories across the golf space. And when he’s not writing about ways to hit the golf ball farther and straighter, the Milwaukee native is probably playing the game, hitting the ball left, right and short, and drinking a cold beer to wash away his score. You can reach out to him about any of these topics — his stories, his game or his beers — at

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