US wins Presidents Cup over International team
JERSEY CITY, N.J. — The United States easily won their seventh consecutive Presidents Cup over the International team on Sunday, but the visitors avoided a record defeat thanks to a last-day rally at Liberty National.
Daniel Berger clinched victory for the United States by winning the fourth of 12 singles matches, 2&1 over South Korean Kim Si-woo to put the Americans over the deciding 15-point mark in the biennial match play team event.
The United States eventually prevailed 19-11 to claim the cup for the 10th time in 12 stagings of the biennial event.
The record winning margin is 11.5 points by the Americans in 2000.
The International team of players from the rest of the world, excluding Europe, started the final day with a near impossible task, needing to sweep every match to snatch victory.
Embarrassed after performing miserably in the foursomes and four-ball matches, the Nick Price-captained International team performed much better in man-to-man play on Sunday, though it was too little, too late.
Winners of only two of 18 matches outright over the first three days, the Internationals won six matches in the final session and halved three others.
The Americans, perhaps suffering a psychological letdown, did not perform at their best as President Donald Trump, who arrived after the matches were in progress.
He looked on from the clubhouse overlooking the 14th green.
American captain Steve Stricker deflected praise to this players.
"U.S.A. team golf is in a great spot," Stricker said of his young and talented team, which has an average age of less than 32 years.
"Looks like they could be around together for a long time. They played well all year long and they came here with a lot of confidence. They continued it right through this tournament here."
International captain Nick Price was sanguine after his third loss in as many appearances at the helm.
"This is a juggernaut of a U.S. team," he said. "They're an overpowering team. We kept losing holes to birdies. These guys were firing on all eight cylinders and it was tough to watch, especially being on the receiving end."
Among the International winners on the final day were former world number ones Jason Day and Adam Scott, as well as Hideki Matsuyama, currently the team's top-ranked player.
American losers included the past three major champions, Jordan Spieth, who remained winless in singles in Presidents and Ryder Cup competitions, Justin Thomas and Brooks Koepka.
"They out-classed us tee to green and even on the greens," Australian Day said of the Americans.
The next event will be played in 2019 at Royal Melbourne in Australia, site of the only International victory in 1998.