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U.S. dominates Day 1 singles at Walker Cup
Southampton, NY (Sports Network) - Trailing Great Britain and Ireland by one point after the morning foursomes, the United States dominated the singles matches Saturday afternoon to grab an 8-4 lead at the 44th Walker Cup.
GB&I won the foursomes matches, 2 1/2-1 1/2 at National Golf Links of America, but the U.S. took the singles matches, 6 1/2-1 1/2, to grab a comfortable lead heading into Sunday.
The U.S. won six of the eight singles matches and halved another, marking their best performance in a Walker Cup singles session since 1997.
"I told them to believe in themselves, enjoy the moment, and to just go out and have fun," said U.S. captain Jim Holtgrieve.
Max Homa highlighted the romp with a 5 & 3 dismantling of Max Orrin, as the California native didn't trail after the opening hole.
Michael Weaver turned in a strong 3 & 1 victory over Matthew Fitzpatrick, while Michael Kim defeated Callum Shinkwin, 2 & 1.
Bobby Wyatt earned a 2-up win over Neil Raymond, while Cory Whitsett and Jordan Niebrugge notched 1-up wins over Jordan Smith and Garrick Porteous, respectively.
GB&I's Nathan Kimsey did his best to stop the onslaught by halving his match with Justin Thomas, while Gavin Moynihan gave GB&I its only singles victory when he outlasted Patrick Rodgers, 2 & 1.
In the morning, the U.S. team got un unexpected halve in the first foursomes match, as Whitsett and Wyatt never led but earned the half-point when Kimsey and Orrin 3-putted on the final hole.
Fitzpatrick and Raymond took the second foursomes match for GB&I, defeating Niebrugge and Smith, 1-up, with a birdie on the final hole.
GB&I took the third match, 3 & 1, as Porteous and Rhys Pugh powered their way past Weaver and Todd White thanks to seven birdies.
The U.S. team picked up its lone foursomes victory in the anchor match, as Rodgers and Thomas won two of their last three holes. The pair notched a a birdie on the 17th to seal their 2 & 1 victory over Moynihan and Kevin Phelan.
"This afternoon we didn't get going really," admitted GB&I captain Nigel Edwards. "America was in control most of the way. We didn't hole putts, shaving the edges a lot."
The U.S., which leads the all-time series, 34-8-1, is looking to avenge its defeat two years ago at Royal Aberdeen Golf Club in Scotland.
09/07 19:27:57 ET
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