US Takes Early Ryder Lead

Americans haven't had a strong opening since 1991
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Sep 19, 2008 1:32 PM CDT
Europe's Ian Poulter lines up his putt on the 18th green during the opening round of the Ryder Cup golf tournament at the Valhalla Golf Club, in Louisville, Ky., Friday, Sept. 19, 2008.    (AP Photo/Morry Gash)
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(Newser) – For the first time since 1991, American golfers lead the Ryder Cup at the end of the opening session. The US is up 3-1 on the Europeans after the morning matches. Justin Leonard and Hunter Mahan claimed the first point for the US, Phil Mickelson and Anthony Kim rallied to halve their match, and a European three-putt at No. 18 handed another win to Stewart Cink and Chad Campbell at Valhalla Golf Club in Kentucky.

Indeed, it was an impressive performance by the Americans, who haven't won since "The Miracle at Brookline" in 1999. Since then, the Europeans have won three in a row, the last two in routs. The Europeans will look to rebound in the afternoon. The matches continue through tomorrow and Sunday.