Team USA Defeats Europe to Reclaim the Arnold Palmer Cup
The victorious Team USA at Atlanta Athletic Club<br>(Palmer Cup photo)
The victorious Team USA at Atlanta Athletic Club
(Palmer Cup photo)

JOHNS CREEK, GA (June 11, 2017) – The United States reclaimed the Arnold Palmer Cup at Atlanta Athletic Club by defeating Europe 19.5-11.5. The two sides halved the final day singles matches, 5-5. The United States now leads the all-time series 11-9-1.

Norman Xiong clinched the cup for Team USA by defeating Harry Hall 8 and 7. Xiong won three straight holes beginning at No. 2 to begin the rout. He closed the match by claiming Nos. 7 through 11.

Maverick McNealy gave the Americans their second 8 and 7 victory, downing Rory Franssen. He won the first hole and never trailed.

Doug Ghim moved to 4-0 after beating Ireland’s Stuart Grehan, 2 and 1. Grehan took the lead with birdie at No. 3 and would hold the lead thru No. 13. Ghim took his first lead and closed out the match by claiming Nos. 16 and 17.

Viktor Hovland delivered Europe’s first point of the day with a 3 and 2 victory against Jimmy Stanger. Stanger took an early lead with eagle at No. 3. Hovland took the lead for good with eagle-birdie on Nos. 5 and 6.

Nick Hardy claimed another point for Team USA winning 3 and 2 over Harry Ellis. Ellis led after a birdie at No. 3. Hardy took the lead and surged ahead by winning back-to-back holes at Nos. 5 and 6 and never relinquished the advantage.

Europe would take the next two matches, both 2 and 1. Norway’s Kristoffer Ventura claimed a tight decision against Sam Burns. Ventura took 1-up leads thru Nos. 6, 8 and 13 and Burns thru No. 10 but both would equalize the following holes. Ventura won Nos. 16 and 17 to close out the match.

Sweden’s Fredrik Nilehn downed Collin Morikawa in the following match. Morikawa led 1-up thru Nos. 2 and 3 and again thru Nos. 6-11. Nilehn moved ahead with par at No. 13 and moved to 2-up by claiming the 15th hole.

Sean Crocker provided the United States’ last point of the day by beating David Wicks, 3 and 2. Wicks led early witg birdie at No. 2. Crocker responded with birdies of his own to take Nos. 4 and 5. Wicks would move the match to all-square the next hole. Crocker would again take the lead and move to 2-up with wins at Nos. 9 and 10 but Wicks equalized the match two holes later. Crocker moved ahead for good with wins at Nos. 12, 14 and 15.

Europe won the final two matches of the day. England’s Richard Mansell came from behind to defeat John Coultas, 2-up. Coultas claimed the first hole and held the lead thru No. 15, pushing the lead to 3-up after No. 5. Mansell took the final three holes for the 2-up triumph.

Sweden’s Hannes Ronneblad closed the competition with a 2 and 1 victory against Chandler Phillips. Ronneblad never trailed and moved ahead for good with par at No. 14.

Wicks of Bexhill, England, and McNealy of Portola Valley, Calif., were named recipients of the Michael Carter Award which is presented to the Arnold Palmer Cup participant that best represents the qualities and ideals of sportsmanship, integrity and upholding of the game.

Morikawa was selected by both teams to receive the Arnold Palmer Cup exemption into the 2018 Arnold Palmer Invitational presented by MasterCard. Players selected the individual from both teams that they think best represents the “Arnold Palmer Legacy,” that is, the values that Arnold Palmer exhibited through his life in golf. Nathan Peterson, the Arnold Palmer Cup junior caddie for Morikawa, will also be on the bag at the Arnold Palmer Invitational.

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ABOUT THE Palmer Cup

The annual Ryder Cup-style competition features top men and women collegiate players from the United States against their International counterparts.

Each team will be comprised of 12 men's and 12 women's golfers. Day one will feature Mixed Four-Ball competition, day two will see Mixed Foursomes in the morning and Four-Ball in the afternoon, with 24 singles matches on the final day.

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