Sept. 30, 2012
MEDINAH, Ill. -- Former Auburn golfer Jason Dufner never trailed as he defeated Peter Hanson of Sweden, 2 up, to finish 3-1 on the weekend to lead the USA in a heart-wrenching 14.5 to 13.5 loss to Europe at the 39th Ryder Cup at Medinah Country Club on Sunday.
The USA entered Sunday’s singles matches with a 10-6 lead. Dufner made the turn at 4 up winning No. 4 with a par, No. 5 with a birdie, the par 5 seventh with an eagle and a birdie at the par 3 eighth. Hanson won the next three holes, Nos. 10-12, with a birdie and two pars to get to within 1 down.
“It is hard to not get up in front of these fans with so much at stake in singles match,” said Dufner. “I made a couple of nice putts there that kind of got me fired up a little bit. This is a really fun environment to play in. I tried to get a point today for the team, and I am going to go back and cheer the guys on hopefully we can get another point and a half and get this going.”
Dufner ended Hanson’s run with a birdie at No. 13 to go 2 up, but Hanson’s birdie on the par 5 14th again closed the gap before Dufner birdied No. 15, driving the green on his tee shot. After the 16th was halved, Hanson made par at No. 17 to create plenty of drama.
Dufner birdied the 18th to win the match, marking the only United States player to win on the final hole throughout the weekend. The win earned a very important point for the USA to tie the score 13-13, but Europe won the match as Germany’s Martin Kaymer defeated Steve Stricker 1 up.
Dufner went 2-1 with partner Zach Johnson on Friday and Saturday before both won their singles matches on Sunday.