USA leads by four games on Day 1 to lead 4-1

USA leads by four games on Day 1 to lead 4-1

The 14th annual Presidents Cup began Thursday at Quail Hollow Club with five foursomes (another shot).

The USA won the session, 4-1, to head into Day 2, which will feature five four-ball (best ball) matches. Here’s how opening day played out in Charlotte, North Carolina:

Game 1: Patrick Cantlay/Xander Schauffele (USA) def. Adam Scott/Hideki Matsuyama (INT), 6 and 5

Scott hit the top of these games and the honor at the International was just one more hole. Cantlay and Schauffele dominated this match from start to finish as they won the third hole with a par and then made four birdies in a five-hole stretch, starting at the par-4 fifth.

The US side built a 3-up advantage through 10 holes and the veteran International duo offered little resistance on the innings. Scott and Matsuyama moved Nos. 11-13 to give the USA their first point of the tournament. Schauffele and Cantlay moved to 5-0 as a team in four rounds, in the Ryder and President’s cups.

Total game scores from the President’s Cup

Game 2: Jordan Spieth/Justin Thomas (USA) def. Sungjae Im/Corey Conners (INT), 2 and 1

Spieth and Thomas combined for two birdies, but never followed through. Par, in fact, provided the strongest moment of the match.

1 up lead on the 15thth hole, Spieth’s tee shot on the par 4 went left, hopping out of the hazard and into the deep rough. Thomas played a great approach shot that went through the putting surface (with the hole in front position) and Spieth then almost putt off the green. Thomas then made the 27 footer for par.

It was also good enough to win the hole and go 2 up. They closed it out with two more pars. Spieth is now 6-0 in four Presidents Cup rounds.

Game 3: Cameron Young/Collin Morikawa (USA) def. Tom Kim/KH Lee (INT), 2 and 1

Young and Morikawa made it 3-0 for the home team, despite being the only US team to score past the first four and a half hours on Thursday.

They bogeyed the second hole to fall 1 down and the match was no more than a difference of two holes. It was tied through 12 holes, when Young and Morikawa birdied the par-4 13th to gain an advantage they would never surrender.

The rookie Young sealed the match with a 26-foot birdie on the 17thth.

Game 4: Si Woo Kim/Cam Davis (INT) def. Scottie Scheffler/Sam Burns (USA), 2 up

This one seemed like Match 1: Two good friends from the US leading an international overmatch combination. Scheffler and Burns were 3 up through seven holes, but Kim and Davis kept chipping away.

The visitors won on the 15thth hole thanks to a double bogey from the US side and then won the 16thth hole with a birdie of their own. Another birdie at the 17thth Kim and Davis took a 1-to-1 lead with one to play.

Kim and Davis only needed a par at the end to win their fourth hole in a row and give the International team their first point.

Game 5: Tony Finau/Max Homa (USA) def. Taylor Pendrith/Mito Pereira (INT), 1 up

This one was tight throughout, and the result was huge for both sides.

Tied through 15 holes, Pendrith had to make a 25-foot birdie at the par-5 16thth to tie the hole. He did. Homa then had to four-footer for par at the 17thth to tie the hole. He did.

At the par-4 18thth, Pereira pulled his tee shot into the rough left and Homa found the fairway. After Pendrith put his second shot into a green bunker, Finau played his approach safely into the middle of the green, 25 feet to the right of the hole.

Pereira blasted out to 12 feet. Homa missed his attempt for the win, but made the team’s par, which left Pendrith with a chance to tie the hole and the match. He missed, giving the United States a comfortable lead going into four balls.

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