152917247 Watson And Simpson Lead US Charge At Ryder Cup

Bubba Watson and Webb Simpson of the USA team wait on the fifth green during the Afternoon Four-Ball Matches for The 39th Ryder Cup at Medinah Country Club on September 28, 2012 in Medinah, Illinois. (Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images)

MEDINAH, IL (AP) – Bubba Watson and Webb Simpson birdied their first hole and never looked back.

The winners of the year’s first two majors earned the first U.S. point in fourballs Friday with a 5-and-4 victory over Paul Lawrie and Peter Hanson, and the Americans were poised to add a few more to the lead before the afternoon was done. They had multi-hole leads in two other fourball matches.

The only source of trouble was Tiger Woods and Steve Stricker – again.

Watson and Simpson birdied seven of their first eight holes, and their lone par – on No. 2 – was still good enough to win the hole. When Watson made putts from inside 8 feet for birdies on Nos. 6, 7 and 8, the question wasn’t if they’d win, but whether if they’d do it in record fashion. They did not, and the Europeans actually won a hole on Lawrie’s 5-footer on 11.

But that only delayed the inevitable. On the green in two on the par-5 14th, Watson needed only to two-putt from 45 feet to end the match. He got close enough on the first try, and the Europeans conceded the putt.

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