Europe Wins Solheim Cup

Entering the final day tied 8-8 with the Americans, the European team won six of the 12 singles matches Sunday and halved two others to beat the U.S. 15-13 and win its first Solheim Cup since 2003. The biennial event was held at Killeen Castle in County Meath, Ireland.

Europe got off to a good start with Catriona Matthew routing Paula Creamer 6 & 5 in the first match and Sophie Gustafson forging a 2-up victory over Stacy Lewis.

After Morgan Pressel beat Anna Nordqvist 2 & 1, giving Pressel a 4-0 record in this year's Solheim Cup, Laura Davies and Juli Inkster halved their match. The tide temporarily turned when another American veteran, Vicky Hurst, beat Melissa Reid 2-up in the fifth match.

Christel Boeljon then beat Brittany Lincicome 2-up to give the Euros another point, then the Americans won two in a row as Brittany Lang beat Sandra Gal 6 & 5 and Christina Kim vanquished Maria Hjorth 4 & 2.

But Suzann Pettersen halted the American's momentum by edging Michelle Wie 1-up. Pettersen was 1-down with three to go, but birdied the final three holes for the big win.

Caroline Hedwall of the Netherlands - 2-down with two holes to play - then earned a crucial halve after rookie and captain's pick Ryann O'Toole bogeyed the 17th and 18th to give Europe a 14-13 lead. Europe needed only a half-point to win the Cup.

Spain's Azahara Munoz birdied the 17th in the final singles to beat Angela Stanford 1-up and secure Europe's victory. In the final match, Cristie Kerr of the U.S. forfeited her match with Karen Stupples due to an injured right wrist.

"I've been in agony all day," European captain Alison Nicholas said. "The players have had such heart and passion and purpose. I hand it all to them. They've been unbelievable.

"They were so up for it and they believed in themselves," Nicholas added. "They just fought to the end. The rookies have done fantastic. The experienced players have done really well as well. It's just been a real team effort."

Pettersen knew she was in prime position to help secure the crucial points for the Europeans. "We knew it was going to come down to the last couple (of matches) if we had a chance and this is just fantastic," she said. "Absolutely brilliant team and what a way to finish on home soil."

Europe has now won four of the 12 Solheim Cups.

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