CROMWELL, Conn. — Jim Furyk has a place in PGA Tour history all to himself with a new magic number in golf.
Three years after Furyk became the sixth player on tour to shoot 59, he took it even lower Sunday in the Travelers Championship with 12-under 58.
The 46-year-old native of West Chester, Pa., bounced in an eagle from 135 yards on his third hole, ran off seven straight birdies around the turn and picked up his final birdie on the 16th hole with a putt from just inside 24 feet. He rolled in a short par putt on the final hole at TPC River Highlands, thrust his arms in the air and waved his cap to salute thousands of fans who had rushed to the amphitheater around the 18th green to catch a stunning slice of history.
"There's a lot of rounds by a lot of great players ahead of me that have never reached 58, so to hold that record alone right now, on the PGA Tour at least … is phenomenal," Furyk said.
And it could have been even lower.
Furyk reached 11 under on the par-70 course with his seventh straight birdie at No. 12. He missed a 12-foot birdie on the 14th hole, and after nearly driving the par-4 15th, his 8-foot birdie putt lipped out.
It might be one of the best rounds hardly anyone saw.
Furyk, who started the final round 16 shots out of the lead, had less than a dozen fans watching when he teed off at 8:41 a.m. He finished his round before the Golf Channel's coverage began.
The news traveled far.
"Amazing, eh?" Justin Rose said from the practice range at the Olympic Golf Course in Rio de Janeiro. "Amazing that he did it without birdieing the 13th (par 5) and 15th. Pretty cool."
It might not have happened if Furyk had not gone this road before. He shot 59 in Lake Forest, Ill., in the second round of the 2013 BMW Championship with a bogey on his card. "I guess had I never shot 59 before, I probably would have been thinking 59, the barrier," he said.
Ryo Ishikawa shot 58 in The Crowns on the Japan Golf Tour in 2010. Shigeki Maruyama shot 58 in U.S. Open sectional qualifying in 2000. And last week Stephan Jaeger posted 58 on the Web.com Tour in the Ellie Mae Classic.
Furyk is the only player with sub-60 rounds twice. And both times, he had to settle for history, not a trophy. He was third at the 2013 BMW Championship and finished in a tie for fifth Sunday.
Now he not only has 59 on his resume, he has 58.
"No one else can say they've done that out here on the PGA Tour," said Furyk, the 2003 U.S. Open winner who might be more known in the Tampa Bay area for winning the 2010 Transitions (now the Valspar Championship) at Innisbrook. "It's really special."