Morning Recap: USA Takes 7-2 Lead With Four-Ball Sweep
June 8, 2018 | Scarsdale, N.Y.
By USGA and The R&A
Highlights from Saturday's three four-ball matches between Great Britain and Ireland and the USA in the 40th Curtis Cup Match at Quaker Ridge Golf Club:
Jennifer Kupcho/Kristen Gillman (USA) def. Olivia Mehaffey/Sophie Lamb (GB&I), 3 and 2
- Kupcho, the reigning NCAA Division I individual champion and No. 2 in the World Amateur Golf Ranking™, and 2014 U.S. Women's Amateur champion Kristen Gillman played 5-under-par golf (with match-play concessions) over their final nine holes to close out what had been the most formidable GB&I side. Mehaffey and Lamb came into the match 1-0-1 for the Match.
- The win kept Gillman perfect at 3-0-0 for the week, while Kupcho improved to 2-0-1.
- Lamb holed a 30-footer for birdie on the first hole to give GB&I a quick lead, but GB&I didn’t make another birdie until the 15th hole.
- Gillman made a beautiful par save on the sixth, chipping from a steeply downhill lie to a tight flagstick. The ball stopped 6 feet from the hole and she converted the putt.
- Kupcho made a key birdie on No. 15 to halve the hole with 3s. It came after Mehaffey, No. 16 in the WAGR and a member of Arizona State's 2017 NCAA title team, hit her approach to 3 feet. Kupcho then hit her approach to 2 feet.
- Kupcho on the side's aggressive play: "We knew we had to make a lot of birdies. In this kind of format you have to go for pins. You can't really be conservative. You always have a partner that can hit to the middle of the green after. So we started doing that, and then we made birdies."
- Gillman on taking down GB&I's best duo: “We definitely wanted to get a point. We’d (USA) lost one match with them and halved. We were definitely looking to get the point this morning."
Mariel Galdiano/Lilia Vu (USA) def. Alice Hewson/Annabell Fuller (GB&I), 2 and 1
- Vu, No. 1 in the WAGR, and her UCLA teammate Galdiano, one of two Curtis Cup returners for the USA Team, played steady 2-under-par golf to defeat Clemson University rising senior Alice Hewson and 16-year-old Annabell Fuller, the youngest member of GB&I.
- The victory upped Vu's record to 3-0-0, matching teammate Kristen Gillman, while Galdiano secured her first point after suffering a loss in foursomes on Saturday. She sat out Friday's four-ball session.
- Vu made a 20-foot birdie on the par-5 first hole.
- Vu extended the side's lead to 3 up when she converted another birdie from 10 feet on the par-4 seventh hole.
- On the par-4 eighth, Hewson answered with a 12-foot birdie putt to trim the margin to 2 up.
- Fuller cut the deficit to one hole by making birdie from 6 feet on the par-3 ninth hole.
- Vu added another 8-footer for birdie on the 14th hole.
- Galdiano on the win: "It's a huge honor. I mean, it's not easy out there. We're all fighting really hard. It's great that we got to play together as teammates. We know each other really well and our games really well, so it was a good win."
- Vu on the intensity of the match: "It was a grind. They're so good, and they were like making birdies. I felt like they were going to make everything. I felt like we had to get the birdie and move on."
Lucy Li/Andrea Lee (USA) def. Lily Mays Humphreys/Shannon McWilliam (GB&I), 3 and 2
- Lee, a Stanford University All-American who is one of the USA's two returners from 2016, and 15-year-old Li, a two-time U.S. Women's Open qualifier, halved 10 consecutive holes from No. 6 before Lee made a short birdie putt on the 16th hole to close out the match.
- Li holed a 6-foot birdie putt on the second hole after reaching the green with a 130-yard approach to put the USA 1 up.
- McWilliam got it back to all square for GB&I on the third hole with a neat third shot onto the back of the green from 100 yards to within 6 feet of the flagstick. The par resulted in GB&I’s only win of the match.
- Lee's approach to within 2 feet of the hole from 140 yards away led to the winning birdie. McWilliam had stuffed her approach to 10 feet, but misjudged her birdie putt. And when Lee made her short putt, the match was over.
- Lee on making a couple of late birdies to pull out the match: "I knew that they were going to bring out their best and make a lot of putts out there, and they did. They made a lot of clutch putts. Shannon hit it really close on 15, and I knew I had to get up there and give myself a chance to, and I did, and that matched her, and that felt really good. Coming to 16, she hit another really close one in there, and then I stuck it to 2 feet and made the putt. So it really feels good to come out with a win."
- Li on how much emotion she has shown: "I think it's just more fun if we get hyped up. Otherwise it's just the same."