U.S. cruises to Arnold Palmer Cup win

Golf Coaches Association of America

U.S. cruises to Arnold Palmer Cup win

Amateur

U.S. cruises to Arnold Palmer Cup win

After an incredible Saturday singles session, Team USA had all but locked up the Arnold Palmer Cup. The Americans indeed put on the finishing touches the following day.

The U.S. cruised to a 19.5-10.5 victory over Europe on Sunday at Atlanta Athletic Club in Johns Creek, Ga., to earn back the Palmer Cup. The home team dominated Saturday singles with a stunning 9.5 out of 10 points to enter Sunday with a 14.5-5.5 lead. All the Americans had to do was earn one point in Sunday singles to close this out.

No problem. Norman Xiong buried Harry Hall, 8 and 7, in the first match out to secure the cup for the U.S. From there, it just came down to how much the home team would win by.

The U.S.’ Maverick McNealy took down Rory Franssen in his own 8-and-7 win. Doug Ghim (4-0 for the week) took down Europe’s Stuart Grehan, 2 and 1. Nick Hardy defeated Harry Ellis, 3 and 2, and Sean Crocker bettered David Wicks by the same margin.

That was five points for the U.S., with Europe matching that total in Sunday singles. Viktor Hovland defeated Jimmy Stanger, 3 and 2, while Kristoffer Ventura ousted Sam Burns and Fredrik Nilehn got the best of Collin Morikawa both by 2-and-1 margins.

Richard Mansell scored a 2-up win over John Coultas, and Hannes Ronneblad was a 2-and-1 winner over Chandler Phillips.

The U.S.’ 19.5-10.5 victory outdid Europe’s 18.5-11.5 triumph at last year’s Arnold Palmer Cup at Formby Golf Club in England. The nine-point margin is the largest since the Americans’ 20.5-9.5 shellacking in 2013. This result also marked the seventh straight year the home team won this event.

The U.S. now leads the overall series 11-9-1.

As is custom, one player from the event was selected by his peers to earn an exemption in to the following year’s Arnold Palmer Invitational. The golfer earning that invitation is the one players from both teams feel best represents the values with which Arnold Palmer took through his life.

Morikawa received that honor this time, meaning the exemption into the 2018 Arnold Palmer Invitational. It actually won’t be Morikawa’s first start on Tour, as the incoming Cal junior missed the cut at the 2016 Safeway Open. Morikawa previously tied for second – losing in a playoff – at last year’s Air Capital Classic on the Web.com Tour.

This was the last Arnold Palmer Cup in its current iteration.

Starting in 2018, the competition will shift to U.S. vs. Internationals squad, with each team having 12 male and 12 female golfers.

Next year’s matches will take place at Evian Resort Golf Club in France.

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