Published: Sat, September 29, 2018
Entertaiment | By Minnie Bishop

Americans seize early edge chasing rare European win in Ryder Cup

Americans seize early edge chasing rare European win in Ryder Cup

Europe's most successful pairing on Friday was Francesco Molinari and Tommy Fleetwood, who went 2-0 on the day.

How big was this rout?

Holders the United States drew first blood in the 42nd Ryder Cup as a fluctuating opening session tracked towards a dramatic conclusion in France.

There were questions about how Henrik Stenson would handle himself in this year's Ryder Cup, and Justin Rose was coming off a gutting last-hole loss in the opening session.

Also earning points for the Americans: Brooks Koepka and Tony Finau pulled off an improbable 1-up triumph over Justin Rose and Jon Rahm, while Dustin Johnson and Rickie Fowler cruised to a 4-and-2 victory over Rory McIlroy and Thorbjorn Olesen. Instead, it smacked into the wooden frame separating the green from the water, shot high in the air and landed 3 feet from the hole for a birdie to square the match. The US never led in the match until it won.

Finau chipped in for an eagle on the par-4 No. 6 to tie the match, but the Europeans were 2 up through 12.

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Three-time major victor Jordan Spieth sizzled with five birdies in his first seven holes alongside Justin Thomas to stake the Americans a 3-up lead through 10 holes against Englishmen Paul Casey and Tyrrell Hatton.

The pairing of Tiger Woods and Patrick Reed was the only USA group to lose their Friday morning match - 3 and 1 at the hands of Tommy Fleetwood and Francesco Molinari.

Molinari and Fleetwood birdied two of the three par-5s, the 3rd and 14th holes, as the former broke open an all-square match and the latter gave Europe a 5-3 lead heading into Saturday. Molinari closed them out with a birdie on the 17th.

Spieth and Thomas, whose friendship took root when they played for the U.S. at the Evian Junior Masters in 2007, held the lead to the end.

Jordan Spieth rolled in a testy 3-footer for par at the 18th hole to close out a 1-up victory over Paul Casey and Tyrrell Hatton.

With a huge crowd cheering on the Europeans at Le Golf National, Johnson stuck his tee shot about 4 feet from the flag.

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