Golf Instructor Michael Block Sinks Hole-in-One at PGA Championship: 'I'm Very, Very Lucky'
The Mission Viejo, California golf pro competed in his seventh major outing over the weekend
History was made on the golf course on Sunday.
California native Michael Block, a PGA club pro, scored the only hole-in-one over the weekend at the PGA Championship at Oak Hill Country Club in Rochester, New York.
His ace marks the first hole-in-one at a PGA Championship since 2020 — and he's the first PGA club pro to score one at a championship since 1996, ESPN reported.
"I was crying in my bed this morning, to be honest with you — and I don't cry, until this week," Block, 46, said while on the Today show Monday morning. "It's been an emotional week and a roller coaster. But it's been fantastic."
Block's ace, which he scored on the 15th hole as he played his final round on Sunday, started off like any other shot — except for the part where he was playing alongside Rory McIlroy. Block shot back-t0-back par 70's in the tournamnent's opening rounds, and then a third par-70 on Saturday, which started him off on Sunday's final round tied for eighth — and playing alongside McIlroy.
"I mean, the circumstances couldn't have been any better. Just unbelievable. Playing with Rory [McIlroy], an idol of mine forever, in the PGA Championship's final round," Block said on the NBC morning show of the Hollywood-like setup that preceded his even more movie-like shot.
However, after driving on the hole that would come to define the tournament, Block said he was totally unaware that he'd just scored a hole-in-one. "I didn't see it go in," he told Dylan Dreyer. "Rory turns around, he's coming up to me giving me a hug. I'm like, 'Why on earth is Rory McIlroy giving me a hug right now?' I'm like, 'Did it go in?' "
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The Northern Irishman wasn't the only pro to congratulate Block. Brooks Koepka, who scored his fifth major win at the tournament on Sunday, told ESPN that he, too, was aware of the jaw-dropping shot.
"We heard the roar," Koepka said. "It sounded like a hole-in-one roar. We weren't sure, maybe someone holed out on 14. It was kind of coming from the same area."
After asking one of the camera operators who had made it, Koepka said he and his caddie laughed as they learned it as Block. "I thought that was special," Koepka, 33, said before joking, "Yeah, drinks are on him, so run the tab up."
While Block's two teenage sons weren't able to be in attendance in New York over the weekend, he said that he felt the support from his family — and the wider community at the golf club he leads in Mission Viejo, California.
One of his son's was at the golf club's restaurant watching his dad play alongside some of the game's modern greats and shared the video of the 15th hole with Block later on.
"I was able to see what happened at the restaurant in the club when I made the hole in one," he said on the Today show Monday morning. "So to see that is so cool and surreal and the support I have from the club and the members and everyone at PGA of America and all the 29 other thousand club professionals across the country, I'm very, very lucky."
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Sunday's hole-in-one brought up a lot of emotion for Block, who told reporters after the tournament of his life-long love of — and dedication to — the sport.
"If it makes any sense, the one thing in the world that makes me cry is golf," an emotional Block told reporters, per CNN. "If that puts into context as far as how much I love the game, you know now. It's everything to me. Obviously I love my family and everything else and my job and everything, but golf is my life. I live it, breathe it."
He added, "I made sure of one thing in my life: That I was going to drive to a golf course every day, whether it was as a caddy or an onsite service kid or an assistant pro or a head pro or general manager, I was going to be at a golf course."
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Sunday's 15th place finish means that Brooks will compete once again in the tournament next year, which will mark his eighth major outing.
For now, though, he's headed off to Texas for this weekend's Charles Schwab Challenge. "I'm super thrilled to be going to Ft. Worth to be playing this week," he said on Today. "And then next, back to work, and oh my gosh, I'm going to have a lot of emails to respond to."
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