MINNEAPOLIS – (Staff and Wire Service Report) – When it comes to the 2018 Ryder Cup, the Europeans will always have Paris but they’ll need an extra half-point to capture the coveted Ryder Cup come next time around. Europe’s run of Ryder Cup victories was brought to an end as the USA won the trophy for the first time in eight years on a glorious Autumn afternoon at Hazeltine in suburban Minneapolis.
The European side came into the three-day contest looking for a fourth consecutive win but were in a deep hole after a 4-0 American onslaught in the opening session Friday morning. Europe faired better on Friday afternoon, but entered the final day trailing 9½-6½.
Open champion Henrik Stenson and rookies Thomas Pieters and Rafa Cabrera Bello put early points on the board in hope of a comeback but wins for Americans Patrick Reed, Rickie Fowler, Brooks Koepka and Brandt Snedeker plus a half for Phil Mickelson had the hosts on the brink of victory.
The win was sealed when Ryan Moore defeated Lee Westwood one up on the last, the pick handing redemption to United States captain Davis Love III following the Miracle at Medinah in 2012 when Europe had fought back from 10-6 behind to win on the final day.
Zach Johnson and Dustin Johnson then cruised to additional wins for the USA, then Germany’s Martin Kaymer defeated USA Olympic medalist Matt Kuchar to etch the final score as 17-11.
Brilliant up-and-downs from Reed on the 12th and 16th solidified the American determination to take the cup. Reed led the USA with 3 1/2 points through the weekend.