A strong Europe puts the United States on the ropes at the PING Junior Solheim Cup

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Europe outplayed their opponents 8.5 to 3.5 after the first round.

  • The large advantage accumulated in the foursomes (5.5 to 0.5), the key to the large European advantage.
  • Europe needs only four more points out of the twelve at stake on the second day to achieve what would be its second consecutive victory.

Europe has put the United States on the ropes on the opening day of the PING Junior Solheim Cup held at the Old Course in La Zagaleta.

The affirmation is based on an incontrovertible figure – 8.5 to 3.5 at the end of the first day – which forces the Americans to make an epic comeback in the second round, where they need eight of the twelve points at stake in the individual matches to obtain the victory and, by the way, to heal the affront of the European triumph on American soil in 2021.

To get there, the girls captained by Gwladys Nocera offered a recital that lacked an adequate response from their opponents in the morning matches. And no better example than what happened at the start of the duel.

Tee of hole 1, 08:15 a.m., evident environmental tension before the start of the PING Junior Solheim Cup, the U18 women’s competition, the prelude to the Solheim Cup, which also raises passions.

Rocío Tejedo from Castellón, with the confidence that characterizes her, has the honor of giving the opening shot of the competition. The impact is superb and the ball ends up far away in the center of the fairway. Her teammate Andrea Revuelta makes a sensational approach shot that takes the ball to the green six meters from the flag. Rocío Tejedo, relentless, holed a straight putt that generated the first standing ovations. Birdie.

In the same match, the American Megan Meng sends the tee ball to a wooded area from where her teammate Irene Kim comes out with difficulty. Needless to say that the European team, with the help of the two merciless Spaniards, scores the hole.

Thus was forged the beginning of a morning day where the European golfers, all together, to a greater or lesser extent, swept the Americans in the foursomes matches. Captain Gwladys Nocera placed Rocio Tejedo and Andrea Revuelta at the forefront, well aware that their quality and understanding would generate returns, driving the rest of their teammates and generating pressure on a completely disarmed American team.

 The effect was devastating, with records that caused vertigo, a sporting tsunami that the American players were unable to counteract. Watching the partial score of the Spanish Tejedo – Revuelta produced admiration. One, two, three, four of advantage in the first four holes, an income extended to six in the passage by the 10th and the duel ended in the 12th hole with an impressive 8/6. A record-breaking score.

As if that were not enough, the rest of the European team, emboldened by the news coming from the first match, and the components of the North American team were also intimidated, started up a demolishing machinery. The differences were not so great, but none of the American pairs managed to forge what would have been a hopeful reaction.

Thus was forged the beginning of a morning day where the European golfers, all together, to a greater or lesser extent, swept the Americans in the foursomes matches. Captain Gwladys Nocera placed Rocio Tejedo and Andrea Revuelta at the forefront, well aware that their quality and understanding would generate returns, driving the rest of their teammates and generating pressure on a completely disarmed American team.

 The effect was devastating, with records that caused vertigo, a sporting tsunami that the American players were unable to counteract. Watching the partial score of the Spanish Tejedo – Revuelta produced admiration. One, two, three, four of advantage in the first four holes, an income extended to six in the passage by the 10th and the duel ended in the 12th hole with an impressive 8/6. A record-breaking score.

 As if that were not enough, the rest of the European team, emboldened by the news coming from the first match, and the components of the North American team were also intimidated, started up a demolishing machinery. The differences were not so great, but none of the American pairs managed to forge what would have been a hopeful reaction.

Indeed, in golf, beware, sometimes a miracle has been worked, although Gwladys Nocera’s pupils don’t seem to be in the mood. Go Girls!

 AROUND THE GREEN

Second consecutive European victory within reach

The PING Junior Solheim Cup, a biennial competition dating back to 2002, has been won by the United States for many years. The balance of seven American wins to three European victories and one draw could be narrowed if Europe wins, which seems within reach for Gwladys Nocera’s girls. Positive results in 2003, 2007 and 2021 – the latter, the first ever on American soil – indicate that, for the first time in history, Europe is in a position to win for the second consecutive edition.

A beautiful presentation of La Zagaleta’s Old Course

The players participating in this edition of the PING Junior Solheim Cup have found an impeccable course, with an extraordinary level of maintenance that has generated very positive comments from the very beginning of the competition. The responsibility for this exquisite presentation corresponds to Nacho Castro, head greenkeeper at La Zagaleta, and his team of 32 people, who have made an extra effort to ensure that everything is impeccable. “This course is always in magnificent condition, ready for any type of event. In this case, the most complicated thing has been to face this challenge at an unfavorable time of the year, given the scarce publiometry and the high salinity of the water used to irrigate the course. But the result, in spite of this, has been very satisfactory”.

Amy Alcott, the U.S. captain who jumped into the lake

The U.S. team has among its ranks, as captain, a golfer of enormous prestige, with many triumphs throughout her prolific career developed mainly in the LPGA. Apart from her outstanding sporting curriculum, Amy Alcott has a curious anecdote to her credit within women’s golf, which lies in the fact that, on one occasion, after achieving one of her victories, her caddie urged her to jump into the lake to celebrate, something that until then had not been done and that, since then, has become one of the most common ways of celebrating the triumph. Why don’t you jump in, her caddie told her. And Amy Alocott took the plunge.

Helen Briem, a player of height

During the recent final of the Girls British Amateur, in which the Spanish Martina Navarro participated, the imposing physique of the German Helen Briem, almost two meters high that allow her to reach enormous distances in her shots with the drive, has already attracted attention. The presence of the German golfer has also attracted attention in this PING Junior Solheim Cup, where she literally takes the head of her teammates and rivals. Regardless of this fact, then, the most important thing is that she plays wonderful golf, mastering, in addition to the driver, all types of clubs.

FOURSOMES 18 SEPTEMBER: Europe, 5.5 – USA, 0.5

Rocio Tejedo – Andrea Revuelta (Europe) beat Megan Meng – Irene Kim (USA) by 8/6.

Spanish exhibition, European exhibition. A wonderful birdie on hole 1 by Rocio Tejedo and Andrea Revuelta was the beginning of an endless exhibition. The denouement, culminated on the 12th hole, avoids further comments. A steamroller that destroyed the American resistance from start to finish. Her accelerated triumph inspired the rest of the European team.

Anna Cañadó – Nora Sundberg (Europe) tied with Yana Wilson – Jasmine Koo (USA).

Although the initiative, in the first hole, was in charge of the Americans, the European pair took the lead for much of the only match that reached the 18th hole. The maximum income, two holes, was reproduced on many occasions, until the 11th hole, when the Americans began to offer a tough resistance rewarded with a tie on the 15th hole that lasted until the 18th.

Francesca Fiorellini – Denisa Vodickova (Europe) beat Elisabeth Rudisill – Ryleigh Knaub (USA) by 2/1.

Total equality until hole 7, moment in which the Italian and the Czech scratched a short advantage that reached its zenith with three of income in hole 10. The Europeans knew how to manage it very well during the second round despite the repeated attempts of the Americans to reverse the situation. The duel ended deservedly on the European side at the 17th hole.

Helen Briem – Yana Beeli (Europe) beat Gianna Clemente – Anna Davis (USA) by 3/2.

Simultaneously, as they were one hole behind, Germany’s Helen Briem and Switzerland’s Yana Beeli added another important point to Europe’s scoreboard. A hesitant start gave the initiative to the United States, a situation that changed sides on the 5th hole. From then on, the scoreboard was like a sawtooth before the Europeans secured, from the 12th hole, a two-hole lead that was maintained until the end.

Cloe Amión – Savannah de Bock (Europe) beat Anna Song – Kathryn Ha (USA) by 2/1.     

With three points already secured by the European team, the fourth came from the hand of the Valencian Cloe Amión and the Belgian Savannah de Bock, a fundamental support in an important victory that had to wait until the conclusion of the 17th hole. Before, as in other matches, a slight European advantage that was leveled at the 13th hole, but it was a mirage, as Cloe and Savannah again imposed their law.

Meja Ortengren – Josefin Widal (Europe) beat Asterisk Talley – Leigh Chien (USA) by 2/1.

One, two and three holes of advantage constituted the income accumulated by the Europeans in the first holes before managing that income to perfection. The Americans came to equalize on the scoreboard, but, as in other matches, it was to react before losing, in their case on the 17th hole, an important point more for Europe in this triumphant morning.

FOURBALLS SEPTEMBER 18: Europe, 8.5 – USA, 3.5

Rocio Tejedo – Andrea Revuelta (Europe) lost to Elisabeth Rudisill – Kathryn Ha (USA) by 3/2.

The winners of the morning day did not find the formula to repeat their success in the afternoon. From the first moment they went against the current and their ability to get birdies was considerably reduced, a circumstance that was taken advantage of by the Americans, who controlled the duel at all times.

Francesca Fiorellini – Denisa Vodickova (Europe) defeated Anna Song – Megan Meng (USA) by 4/3.

They repeated as a couple and repeated positive result, two points to their credit that show the solidity of their game. Italian and Czech gave no option to their rivals, gradually increasing the advantage in their favor until the duel was solved in the 15th hole.

Anna Cañadó – Yana Beeli (Europe) lost to Gianna Clemente – Yana Wilson (USA) by 1up.

A draw in the morning and a defeat in the afternoon, in this case in the company of the Swiss Yana Beeli, was the contribution of Anna Cañadó from Tarragona. Both kept their rivals at bay for almost the entire round, although their initiative was first endangered when the Americans tied the duel between the 12th and 14th holes, a previous step before finishing off the Europeans, in a heart-stopping finish, on the 18th hole.

Cloe Amión – Josefin Widal (Europe) beat Asterisk Talley – Leigh Chien (USA) by 2/1

The cheerful Valencian was the only Spanish player to score two points on the first day of competition. In the morning she established a magnificent connection with the Belgian De Brock and in the afternoon with the Swedish Josefin Widal. Both controlled at all times the proposals of Talley and Chien, with an insurmountable disadvantage from the 13th hole.

Helen Briem – Savannah de Bock (Europe) beat Irene Kim – Ryleigh Knaub (USA) 5/4

Nothing stopped the devastating combined action of the German-Belgian pair. Both played perfectly together to win the match in their favor with increasing ease. It was very hard for the Americans to see that, hole after hole, the solidity of the Europeans was unbreakable. The duel was decided on the 14th hole.

Meja Ortengren – Nora Sundberg (Europe) lost to Jasmine Koo – Anna Davis (USA) by 3/2.

The Swedish pair was again the bet of Gwladys Nocera’s last match. The Nordic players responded effectively for much of the round, but their performance lost ground after the Americans equalized the contest on the 8th hole. They had chances again, but lost them in a final stretch where everything took on the color of the stars and stripes.

AT THE MICROPHONE

Cloe Amión: “We must not be confident, in 2021 a great reaction gave Europe the victory”.

Happy with the performance of the European team in general, happy for her personal performance – the only Spaniard to score the two possible points at stake – Cloe Amión expressed her satisfaction “for a debut that I could not have imagined. I played very well and I got on very well with my teammates both in the morning and in the afternoon. The result is wide, yes, but we must not be confident, because in 2021 a great reaction in the second day gave the victory to Europe”.

The Solheim Cup 2023, an event of exceptional public interest whose official venue is Finca Cortesin, is sponsored by PING, Costa del Sol Tourism and Rolex as global partners; and by the Consejería de Turismo, Cultura y Deporte de la Junta de Andalucía, with co-financing from the European Union, Acosol, the Marbella Town Hall and the Benahavís Town Hall as official partners, and Casares Town Hall and Reale Seguros are official sponsors. Solán de Cabras, Eversheds Sutherland, Toro, Vithas, E-Z-GO, Jet Set Sports and Olin are official suppliers. BMW Automotor Premium is official sustainability car. Peninsula and Trablisa are sustainability partners. Marca and Radio Marca are official media. Promoted and organised by Deporte & Business. Gusto del Sur, DOP Jabugo and Málaga are Proud Supporters. LET, LPGA, RFEG, CSD and RFGA collaborate in its organisation.

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