Sep
8
2013
Americans run away with Walker Cup
By Stephanie Wei under Amateur Golf
For the win!

For the win!

This is going to be sweet and short — and my apologies, I’ll update later tonight or tomorrow (more likely the latter). Turns out golf is an *extremely* grueling sport to play and cover. All that walking up-and-down hills! Or perhaps I’m an idiot who is out of shape? I was somewhat reluctant in being convinced to go to the ER to be treated for dehydration and heat exhaustion (and run some tests just to be safe, so thanks to the colleagues who looked out for me). Good news is I feel much better after they gave me oxygen and an IV of fluids, etc.

I’m still very fatigued and I’m on strict doctor’s orders to rest and hydrate the next few days, so I probably shouldn’t even be trying to write a short post right now because, you know, next thing you know I’ll be in the back of an ambulance for the second time today! I was mostly resistant in going to the hospital because I wanted to watch the singles matches and the American routing of Great Britain & Ireland (and I don’t like making that kind of scene and being all dramatic).

Heading into this edition of the Walker Cup, the U.S. had lost six straight Ryder Cups, Solheim Cups, Walker Cups, and Curtis Cups to the Europeans and hadn’t retain or won any of those Cups since 2010, but now this 2013 Walker Cup team has broken that embarrassingly awful streak and with style.

Quickly, to recap the four morning foursomes, which were split 2-2, but really, GB&I probably let the third and fourth matches slip through their fingers.

Max Homa and Michael Kim (USA) never led in their match with Garrick Porteous and Rhys Pugh (GB&I), who were 1-up or all square (AS). Heading into 17, Porteous and Pugh were 1-up, but then one of them missed a 2-3 footer, giving the Americans the hole and going into the 18th with the match AS. GB&I missed another short putt for par and the Americans won 1-up. Ouch.

In the final foursomes match Sunday morning, Gavin Moynihan and Kevin Phelan were 4-up through seven holes playing against Parick Rodgers and Jordan Niebrugge, but the Americans made an incredible comeback to win 2-up.

So, the tally was U.S. 10, GB&I 6 going into the 10 afternoon singles matches.

It was pretty much over before the first singles match teed off after those heartbreaking and deflating losses in the last two foursomes matches.

*******

Justin Thomas asked Captain Jim Holtgrieve to sit him on Sunday morning because he fighting lower back pain, and the extra rest seemed to be the right choice because Thomas routed Max Orrin 6&4 in the second singles match.

In the third match, Matt Fitzpatrick got a little bit of redemption against Michael Weaver, whom he lost to in Saturday singles, beating him 3&2.

Todd White, the 45-year-old schoolteacher and successful mid-amateur player comfortably beat Rhys Pugh 4&3 for a key point. Then, four-time U.S. Mid-Amateur champion Nathan Smith, 35, clinched the winning point in the fifth Sunday singles match, beating Nathan Kimsey 4&3. So after that, it was more about the margin the Americans were going to throttle GB&I.

Turned out to be an eight-point margin — U.S. 17, GB&I 9. So, it was similar to what the Europeans did to the Americans at the Solheim Cup a few weeks ago.

Congrats to the victorious 2013 U.S. Walker Cup team and thanks for bringing one of the six Cups back on American soil.

“Everybody played so hard as a team there were no individuals here, all these guys gave their hearts and I can’t say enough about them,” said an emotional U.S. captain Jim Holtgrieve.

“I think Bobby Jones and the team of 1922 are all here today and saying good things about us.”

*Here’s a summary of the singles matches (which I’ll update later with quotes, etc.):

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