United States Retains Solheim Cup

By beating the European squad 16-12 (8-4 in the Sunday singles matches).  Paula Creamer, Angela Stanford, and Michelle Wie went out in the first 3 matches today and all got wins for the United States to put them in a lead they wouldn’t relinquish.  Probably most key was Wie, who went 3-0-1 for the event, claiming the 1up win over Helen Alfreddson.  Wie played good golf all weekend hitting solid iron shots and putting well.  More to the point she looked comfortable, relaxed and like she was having fun on the golf course, not programmed and joyless.  This weekend could really signal a growth in her game and in her personally as she charts her own course and not one set by her father and the sports media.  We can only hope.  But the Cup was still looking like a 50-50 proposition until two critical halves came in.  Brittany Lang made a furious late rally to halve Laura Davies, who hit in a hazard on 18 to lose that hole, and team mom Julie Inkster also rallied late to halve her match despite losing 18.  From there it was a matter of not blowing it.  Christina Kim went dormi in her match with 2 holes left to get close, then Morgan Pressel clinched it when she won 16 over Anna Nordquist to win her match 3-2 and guarantee the US at least 14 1/2 points (needing a tie at 14 at least to retain).  I thought the lineup was well set by captain Beth Daniel, putting Paula Creamer out 1st to build momentum (and frankly not counting on her to anchor given her record in majors when she puts too much pressure on herself) and using the very controlled, fiesty, and gutty Pressel to anchor near the back and grind out a win if needed.  All and all a compelling weekend of golf in Illinois with plenty of close matches and solid play.

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