Good evening… or morning. Either way, welcome.
The United States has all but lifted the trophy at Whistling Straits. Going into Sunday singles, the U.S. has an 11-5 lead and needs just 3.5 more points to secure the Ryder Cup. Ryder Cup Scoring
Dire Straits (for Europe)
On Saturday, U.S. captain Steve Stricker didn’t try to fix what wasn’t broken. He rolled out the same foursomes pairings he did on Friday, and they delivered the same 3-1 result. The go-to teams of Dustin Johnson-Collin Morikawa and Patrick Cantlay-Xander Schauffele dispatched their European opponents with relative ease. The Americans started the afternoon session with a 9-3 lead and just needed to avoid disaster.
Staring down almost certain defeat, the Europeans fought valiantly in four-ball. Tyrrell Hatton and Shane Lowry secured a point against Tony Finau and Harris English, and their fiery play woke up the small contingent of Euro fans. Lowry in particular began to look like a hero. But the Europeans ended up merely splitting the four-ball matches, and if they’re going to come back on Sunday, they’ll need a team full of Lowrys.
For Europe, the main bright spot has been the Spanish duo of Jon Rahm and Sergio García, who have won all three matches they’ve played together. Rahm alone has secured 3.5 of Europe’s six points.
The top Americans, in contrast, have shared the load. Johnson, Morikawa, Cantlay, and Schauffele have all won multiple matches and lost none. DJ may be on his way to a rare 5-0-0 record, a feat previously accomplished only by Arnold Palmer, Gardner Dickinson, Larry Nelson, and Francesco Molinari. The only anxious-looking members of the U.S. team have been the ones playing against the Spaniards. Barring an even bigger miracle than the one that occurred at Medinah, the United States will reclaim the Ryder Cup on Sunday.
Winds whipped out of the southwest on Saturday and made an already difficult Whistling Straits even more demanding. Golf balls oscillated on the greens, and players had to make multiple-club adjustments to their usual yardages. Only excellent shots were rewarded; less committed strikes were severely punished. Match play is always fun on its own, but these conditions took day two of the Ryder Cup to the next level.
Rory McIlroy is 0-3-0. A strange sentence to write.
Justin Thomas, Bryson DeChambeau, and Shane Lowry all did that thing where you make a short putt and use the length of your putter to show that it was “inside the leather” and should have been conceded. (Some claim Lowry made the gesture jokingly.) Guys, just act like it doesn’t bother you!
Brooks Koepka looked like he was ready to fight a pair of rules officials after not getting relief on the 15th hole during morning foursomes. His playing partner Daniel Berger got pretty spicy as well. Meanwhile, Sergio García put some popcorn in the microwave and did his best not to laugh.
Also a little hot under the collar? Jon Rahm’s caddie! When Jordan Spieth questioned the location of a drop Rahm was taking, looper Adam Hayes became animated and had a testy exchange with Spieth.
Both Daniel Berger and Justin Thomas sat out in the afternoon, so they had some time to hang out on the first tee, pump up the fans, and chug beers that were tossed at their feet. This reportedly really annoyed the Europeans as they saw it as disrespectful.
Jordan Spieth could probably use a beer after this lip-out.
A Lim Kim, Nasa Hataoka, Yuka Saso, Jeongeun Lee6, Jennifer Kupcho, and Minjee Lee are in the mix at the Walmart NW Arkansas Championship on the LPGA Tour. Hataoka had a hole-in-one in each of her first two rounds of the event! Leaderboard
The U.S. Mid-Amateur is off and running on Nantucket. Leaderboard
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