Capsules from 1st day of the Ryder Cup at Whistling Straits
SHEBOYGAN, Wis. (AP) — A capsule look at Friday’s matches in the Ryder Cup:
Jon Rahm and Sergio Garcia, Europe, def. Justin Thomas and Jordan Spieth, 3 and 1.
The Americans took an early lead when Thomas made a 6-foot birdie put. Garcia hit his tee shot to 15 feet to set up a birdie on the third to square the match, and then Rahm holed a 60-footer from just off the green for Europe’s first lead. Europe seized control as Rahm made three birdies in four holes for a 3-up lead. The Americans tried to claw back. The big moment came at the 15th. Spieth hit into 8 feet, and it looked as though the Americans could cut the deficit to one hole with three to play. But Garcia made a 25-footer and Thomas missed the birdie putt. Europe was dormie. It ended with a wild moment on the 17th when Spieth hit from the side of a slope to 6 feet and the momentum of his swing sent him racing down the hill toward Lake Michigan to keep from falling. Thomas missed the putt and they conceded the match.
Dustin Johnson and Collin Morikawa, United States, def. Paul Casey and Viktor Hovland, Europe, 3 and 2.
Johnson made sure the Americans got off to a stable start with a great wedge from native grass that set up birdie and a nice chip to halve the second hole. Europe took its only lead with a par at No. 4 thanks to a wild drive by Johnson. The Americans tied it when Johnson made a 12-foot birdie on No. 6, took the lead when Casey missed the seventh green that led to bogey and sealed it with consecutive birdies on the 11th and 12th holes for a 3-up lead. They closed it out when Johnson found the fairway on the par-5 16th and Morikawa hit fairway metal to 30 feet for a two-putt birdie.
Brooks Koepka and Daniel Berger, United States, def. Lee Westwood and Matt Fitzpatrick, Europe, 2 and 1.
There were few memorable moments in this one. The Europeans never trailed by more than two holes and the match was all square at the turn. Koepka made a 6-foot birdie at No. 10, hit wedge to 6 feet at No. 11 for Berger to make the birdie putt, and they were on their way. The teams halved the remaining six holes, with Westwood missing an 8-foot par putt on the 17th that sealed the European loss.
Patrick Cantlay and Xander Schauffle, United States, def. Rory McIlroy and Ian Poulter, Europe, 5 and 3.
The Americans never trailed in the final morning match, grabbing the lead with a birdie at the first when Cantlay drained a 5-footer to begin a five-hole win streak. They won the par-5 second with a par and the fourth hole with a par. The Europeans staged a brief comeback, beginning with birdies at Nos. 10 and 11 to cut the lead to 3 up. McIlroy hit his tee shot on the par-3 12th to 8 feet for birdie, but Schauffele hit his wedge to 2 feet for a conceded birdie. They matched birdies on the 13th, too. But Cantlay’s approach at the par-4 14th rolled to within 3 feet of the flag to set up the Americans’ sixth birdie and restore a 4-up margin. They closed it out on the next hole when the Europeans failed to make birdie and conceded a fourth straight birdie to end the match.
Dustin Johnson and Xander Schauffele, United States, def. Paul Casey and Bernd Wiesberger, Europe, 2 and 1.
Johnson hit his tee shot to 4 feet for birdie on the par-3 third, and the Americans were on their way. Casey’s birdie on the ninth cut the deficit to 1 going to the back nine, but Johnson birdied the next three holes as the Americans restored their lead to 3 up. Europe tried to at least get a halve out of the match until Schauffele hit a beautiful lag from 60 feet on the 17th and knocked in the 3-foot par putt for the win.
Jon Rahm and Tyrrell Hatton, Europe, halved with Bryson DeChambeau and Scottie Scheffler, United States.
This was the DeChambeau show for so much of the match, even if not all his big drives were rewarded. He went over the massive bunker complex with a 417-yard drive that set up a flip wedge and an eagle to square the match. It was tight the rest of the way. Europe never led, but Rahm twice made big birdies on the ninth and 11th to eliminate U.S. leads. A par into the win was enough for the U.S. to take a 1up lead on the 15th. Europe was down going to the 18th when Hatton delivered his best shot of the day with a 5-iron to 7 feet, and he holed the birdie putt to earn a halve.
Tony Finau and Harris English, United States, def. Rory McIlroy and Shane Lowry, Europe, 4 and 3.
McIlroy made holed a 30-foot eagle putt on the par-5 fifth hole for a 1-up lead, quickly eliminated when Finau drove the sixth green with a 330-yard drive to 15 feet and two-putted for birdie. English made his Ryder Cup debut with a big birdie on the eighth for the first U.S. lead, and Finau took it from there. He birdied the next two holes as the American built a 3-up lead, and then made a 12-foot birdie on the 13th that sent them on their way. McIlroy lost both matches and never made it to the 16th hole.
Tommy Fleetwood and Viktor Hovland, Europe, halved with Justin Thomas and Patrick Cantlay, United States
Fleetwood and Hovland put blue on the board early with three birdies that staked them to a 3-up lead. Thomas got emotionally involved with a birdie on the ninth to keep the match from getting away from the Americans, and they pecked away. Europe never won another hole after No. 8. Cantlay again delivered a shot to tap-in range on the par-3 12th to cut the deficit to on. Thomas delivered the shot of the match, a fairway metal to 18 feet for eagle on the par-5 16th that squared the match. The 18th hole featured a pair of bunker saves by Fleetwood and Cantlay, while Thomas and Hovland each had birdie chances from the 30-foot range. Neither came close and the match was halved.