Europeans Cut US Ryder Lead

Even without Garcia, Westwood
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Sep 20, 2008 1:41 PM CDT
USA's Stewart Cink reacts after putting his ball in the water on the 15th hole at the Ryder Cup , Sept. 20, 2008. The US conceded the hole and lost the match.   (David J. Phillip)
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(Newser) – Even with Sergio Garcia and Lee Westwood reduced to the role of spectators, the Europeans cut into a commanding US lead at the Ryder Cup today. The Europeans closed to within 7-5 by winning two matches and halving another. Jim Furyk and Kenny Perry gave the Americans their only outright win of the morning alternate-shot matches, beating Padraig Harrington and Robert Karlsson 3-and-1.

The US took a stunning loss when Phil Mickelson and Anthony Kim, its most talented duo, squandered a 4-up lead after six holes. Euro captain Nick Faldo was criticized for his decision to bench Garcia and Westwood, but the move worked out just fine, and both players were fresh for afternoon best-ball. "I'm buzzing," said England's Ian Poulter, who teamed with Justin Rose for one of the European wins.