Mike Saladino

Staff Writer

Heading into the 2016 golf season, Team Europe had won 6 of the last 7 Ryder Cups Team USA was looking to change that heading into Hazeltine National Golf Club, this years host of the Ryder Cup. Team USA were the favorites this year due to the depth of their lineup that included big names such as Dustin Johnson, Jordan Spieth, Rickie Fowler, Patrick Reed, and Phil Mickelson. While Europe still had big names like Rory McIlroy, Henrik Stenson, and Justin Rose, they lack experience as they had 6 new players playing in the Ryder Cup for the first time. Team USA got off to a hot start on Friday as they lead Europe 4 to 0 after the first of five sessions. Patrick Reed and Jordan Spieth were the team to beat as they cruised to a 3 & 2 victory over a very good European team with Henrik Stenson and Justin Rose. Europe need to come back Friday afternoon and they certainly did, led by their best player Rory Mcilroy who won his match with Ryder Cup rookie Thomas Pieters, 3 & 2. This win sparked Europe as they won three of the four matches in the afternoon to only trail the USA 5 to 3 after day one. Starting Saturday morning, Europe continue the run as they were able to win two matches and get a big half point out of the Reed/Spieth pairing as they won the last three holes to tie it. The USA still were able to hold a one point lead after the morning play thanks to Brandt Snedeker and Brooks Koepka winning their match 3 & 2 against Henrik Stenson and Ryder Cup rookie Matt Fitzpatrick. With Team USA holding a one point advantage heading into the afternoon, they knew they needed a good afternoon to stop Team Europe’s run. Europe keep it going with their best pairing, McIlroy and Pieters winning 3 & 1, over the long hitters of Brooks Koekpa and Dustin Johnson. Team USA responded in a huge way winning their next three matches. Patrick Reed was a huge part of the great play in the afternoon, by picking up his partner Jordan Spieth. Reed sparked the crowd when making every putt and yelling at the crowd to get pumped up. After Saturday, Team USA led 9 1⁄2 to 6 1⁄2, with the Sunday singles to play. Europe needed another comeback just like four years ago at the 2012 Ryder Cup when they came back from down four points. Europe put their best players out early and hoped to win the early matches and change the momentum. The first match of the day was between the hottest players of the Ryder Cup, McIlroy for Europe vs Reed for the USA. The match was a back and forth match as each player was playing at a extremely high level as every putt they hit went in. Even more entertaining McIlroy kept trying to quiet the American crowd after he made a putt. Reed kept coming back and stirring up the crowd after his putts dropped. Reed would go on to win the match by one hole. Europe won three of the first five matches to close the lead down to just two, but USA had too much depth. They were able to win five of the last seven matches to clinch the Ryder Cup, winning 17 to 11. As the USA celebrate a huge victory, this Ryder Cup was one for the ages. USA has plenty to look forward to in the next couple Ryder Cups with plenty of great skill from great players. So after Europe had dominated the Ryder cup for the last 15 years, it is now time for the USA to return the favor.