July 11, 2002
DOONBEG, County Clare, Ireland – The United States broke a 2-2 tie Thursday afternoon, winning two matches and halving another while taking a 4 ˝ to 3 ˝ lead over Great Britain and Ireland in the Palmer Cup presented by Pennzoil at Doonbeg Golf Club.
Brock Mackenzie and Nick Watney tallied the first point of the afternoon for the United States, defeating Andy Smith and Justin Walters. Mackenzie and Watney won the first hole, then seven out of the last nine to win the match. The GB&I pair, who lost 6 and 4, beat Ryan Hybl and Lee Williamson in the four-ball matches by the same score.
Great Britain and Ireland answered the Americans with a 5 and 4 victory by Geoff Harris and Stuart Manley. The two built their lead over John Klauk and Hunter Mahan gradually, leading 2-up after six holes, 3-up after nine and 4-up after 12.
It appeared that GB&I would win a second-straight match as Philip Rowe and Oliver Wilson led by two with two holes remaining against Hybl and Williamson. Needing only a halved hole to win the match, the Englishmen conceded both the 17th and 18th.
While Rowe and Wilson could only hope for bogie on 17, Williamson stuck a 5-iron within one foot of the hole for birdie. Then on 18, Rowe and Wilson both found the beach with their tee shots, earning two penalty strokes before landing on the fairway. The pair then conceded the hole, and halved the match.
“It was the best shot of the tournament,” Hybl said of his partner’s shot on 17. “He hit it so crisp. He thought it was about 10 feet – I knew it was stiff. That was a big shot.”
Bill Haas and D.J. Trahan ended the afternoon with a 2 and 1 victory over Justin Kehoe and Stuart Wilson. While the match was closely contested, the Americans never trailed and closed out their opposition on the 17th hole.
Notes The Palmer Cup is the first official competition at this new links. The matches are part of Doonbeg’s grand opening celebration, which included an exhibition between designer Greg Norman and Irishman Padraig Harrington on Tuesday. The last time the Palmer Cup was hosted by Great Britain and Ireland, Team GB&I defeated the U.S. 12.5 to 11.5. The United States has yet to win the Palmer Cup when GB&I hosts (tie in 1998, loss in 2000). This is the first time the matches have been contested in Ireland. The United States leads the series 3 wins, 1 loss and 1 tie. The matches are being filmed by European Tour Productions for a tape-delayed highlight show broadcast on BSKYB in the U.K. and The Golf Channel in the United States. (Dates yet to be announced) Justin Kehoe is the lone Irishman in the tournament. PGA Tour player Jay Haas was in the gallery today, watching his son Bill compete on the new links at Doonbeg.
Four-ball Matches Results Doonbeg Golf Club, County Clare, Ireland Thursday, July 11, 2002
Game 1 GB&I Philip Rowe and Oliver Wilson def. USA Brock Mackenzie and Nick Watney, 1-up
Game 2 GB&I Andy Smith and Justin Walters def. USA Ryan Hybl and Lee Williamson, 6 and 4
Game 3 USA John Klauk and Hunter Mahan def. GB&I Geoff Harris and Stuart Manley, 1-up
Game 4 USA Bill Haas and D.J. Trahan def. GB&I Justin Kehoe and Stuart Wilson, 1-up
Team Points: GB&I 2 USA 2
Foursomes (Alternate Shot) Results Doonbeg Golf Club, County Clare, Ireland Thursday, July 11, 2002
Game 5 GB&I Philip Rowe and Oliver Wilson halved with USA Ryan Hybl and Lee Williamson
Game 6 USA Brock Mackenzie and Nick Watney def. GB&I Andy Smith and Justin Walters, 6 and 4
Game 7 GB&I Geoff Harris and Stuart Manley def. USA John Klauk and Hunter Mahan, 5 and 4
Game 8 USA Bill Haas and D.J. Trahan def. GB&I Justin Kehoe and Stuart Wilson, 2 and 1
Team Points: USA 4.5
Morning Singles Matches Pairings Doonbeg Golf Club, County Clare, Ireland Thursday, July 11, 2002
Game 9 8 a.m. GB&I Oliver Wilson vs. USA Bill Haas
Game 10 8:10 a.m. GB&I Philip Rowe vs. USA Nick Watney
Game 11 8:20 a.m. GB&I Geoff Harris vs. USA John Klauk
Game 12 8:30 a.m. GB&I Stuart Manley vs. USA Ryan Hybl
Game 13 8:40 a.m. GB&I Stuart Wilson vs. USA Brock Mackenzie
Game 14 8:50 a.m. GB&I Andy Smith vs. USA Lee Williamson
Game 15 9 a.m. GB&I Justin Walters vs. USA Hunter Mahan
Game 16 9:10 a.m. GB&I Justin Kehoe vs. USA D.J. Trahan
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