While you were sleeping, here’s what happened at the Ryder Cup
The blue wave
Coming off a day where the United States lost five straight matches to go down 5-3, you’d think the Americans would show some more fight against Europe. You’d think. Instead, Europe won the first three matches of the morning to total eight straight overall and post an 8-4 lead.
Saturday afternoon pairings
For Saturday’s afternoon pairings, everything’s familiar for Europe, while the U.S. goes for a Hail Mary:
• Henrik Stenson/Justin Rose vs. Dustin Johnson/Brooks Koepka
• Sergio Garcia/Alex Noren vs. Bubba Watson/Webb Simpson
• Francesco Molinari/Tommy Fleetwood vs. Tiger Woods/Bryson DeChambeau
• Rory McIlroy/Ian Poulter vs. Jordan Spieth/Justin Thomas
Captain America’s torn apart
The hero of America’s victory two years ago is nowhere to be found this year. Patrick Reed has gotten whipped by Fleetwood and Molinari, and appears lost and confused playing alongside Woods. Whether it’s the European crowds getting to him, the ongoing slump he’s suffering, or the fact that he’s most definitely not the top dog in his pairing, Reed’s not anywhere close to top form.
Justin Thomas taunts the crowd
Pretty much the only player with any kind of spark on Saturday morning was Justin Thomas, who drained putt after key putt to keep his match going long after all other American teams were cashed. With Reed neutered, it fell to Thomas to bring a bit of wrestling-heel spark to the proceedings:
It’s not over ’til Justin Thomas says it’s over. Thomas almost singlehandedly won his own match to stop the European charge, and he gave the U.S. a touch of hope heading into the afternoon.