ARDMORE, Pa. - University of Alabama golfer Bud Cauley halved his Sunday afternoon singles match with Chris Paisley as the United States team earned its third straight Walker Cup with a 16.5-9.5 victory over Great Britain and Ireland at the Merion Golf Club.
The native of Jacksonville, Fla., Cauley scored 3.5 points for the U.S. team with a 3-0-1 record. It was the second most points of any player, with Rickie Fowler and Peter Uihlein going 4-0 and totaling four points.
"It was the best week of my life," Cauley said following his singles match on Sunday. "I have never had so much fun playing golf. The atmosphere and the guys on the team, everything was great. It was everything I thought it would be and more. I'm going to remember this for the rest of my life."
The U.S. team began singles matches Sunday afternoon needing just two points to retain the cup and 2.5 to win it outright.
"We know (GB&I) was going to come out hard and play well," Cauley said. "There is no quit in them at all. We tried to get off to a good start and kill their momentum. We wanted to make it an easy afternoon and not anything crazy."
The Americans clinched the Cup early in the afternoon and finished with a 5-4-1 record in singles play. Fowler, Uihlein, Morgan Hoffman, Cameron Tringale and Brendan Gielow earned wins for the U.S. team. Tringale's 8 & 6 win over Luke Goddard clinched the Cup for the United States.
Sunday Morning Foursomes
Cauley and Fowler combined for their second foursomes win Sunday morning at Merion Golf Club just outside of Philadelphia.
The pair won 1-up as Cauley sank a 3-foot birdie putt on the 18th green to halve the hole but secure the match and the one team point that comes with it. The Great Britain and Ireland duo of Stiggy Hodgson and Niall Kearney won the 17th hole to force the match to the full 18 holes, but Hodgson's long birdie try just burned the top side of the hole, allowing Cauley to halve the hole with his par putt.
"I wanted as many opinions (on reading the last putt) as I could get," Cauley said just off the 18th green following the win. "I really came down to trying to make a good stroke. It was a pretty simple putt; I was just trying to put a good stroke on it."
The U.S. team, led by captain Buddy Marucci, take an 11-5 lead heading into Sunday afternoon's 10 singles matches that will conclude the 2009 Walker Cup. The Americans need just two points (13) to retain the Cup and 2.5 points (13.5) to win the 2009 Walker Cup outright.
Team USA went 3-1 in the Sunday morning foursomes to extend their lead. Brian Harman and Adam Mitchell was the first match off this morning and posted a 3 & 2 win over Gavin Dear and Matt Haines of GB&I. Nathan Smith and Peter Uihlein won the fourth match 5 & 4 over Chris Paisley and Dale Whitnell.
GB&I's lone win in the foursomes on Sunday morning was a 3&2 victory over Drew Weaver and Brendan Gielow.