SUGAR GROVE, Ill. – Did Americans Morgan Pressel and Michelle Wie win a half point in the morning fourballs or lose a half point?
All you had to do was look at their faces to know.
Wie and Pressel looked like they had been punched in the stomachs coming off the 18th green.
Europeans Catriona Matthew and Maria Hjorth were beaming after Matthew holed a 15-foot birdie putt at the last hole to halve the match.
Matthew studied the board on her walk to the final green and knew the putt was the difference between the Europeans trailing by a point or two points after the morning session.
Instead of down 3-1, the Euros ended the morning down 2 ½-1 ½.
“We knew how important it was,” said Matthew, who won the Ricoh Women’s British Open three weeks ago.
Pressel and Wie fought from 2 down to go 1 up winning three consecutive holes (Nos. 12-14), but they couldn’t close out the victory coming home. With a 1-up lead through 16, Pressel hit two balls in the water at the 17th hole. At the 18th, she blew her wedge over the green from less than 100 yards. Wie blew her drive right at the 18th hole and nearly in the woods, and after pitching sideways hit her approach heavy and into the front greenside bunker.
“Half points are important,” Pressel said. “But for awhile it looked like we were going to pull out the full point, so that definitely was a downer at the end. But a half point is a half point, and we’ll see how big of a deal that is come Sunday.”