USA beat Britain & Ireland for third straight Walker Cup

·2 min read
Members of Team USA pose for photos after defeating Team Great Britain & Ireland 14-12 in the 2021 Walker Cup amateur golf match

The United States, buoyed by a 4-0 performance from Ricky Castillo, beat Great Britain & Ireland 14-12 on Sunday for a third straight title in the Walker Cup amateur golf match.

Seminole Golf Club in Juno Beach, Florida, provided a spectacular backdrop for the biennial trans-Atlantic match-play showdown for amateurs, which was rendered even more of a test after a stomach bug left members of both teams weak and unable to practice or play for three days.

With so many affected, pairings were altered and alternates, normally not even on-site at the Walker Cup, were called into action.

The United States took a 7-5 lead into the final day on Sunday, which was trimmed to 8 1/2-7 1/2 after Britain & Ireland earned 2 1/2 of four points in the morning foursomes.

That left 10 afternoon singles matches to decide the match.

"It was such an evenly matched contest and our guys were really fired up," said USA captain Nathaniel Crosby. "I've been blessed to be part of their lives here for a few years and it's been so great."

Castillo, 20 and a second year student at the University of Florida, became just the seventh player in Walker Cup history to record four wins in a single edition.

He defeated John Murphy 2 & 1, to close out his first Walker Cup start.

"It's incredible," Castillo said. "I mean, this is the pinnacle of amateur golf, and to be a part of this team and be a part of a winning Walker Cup team is pretty special, especially going 4-0. I couldn't be more excited right now."

Cole Hammer, a University of Texas junior playing in his second Walker Cup, gained the clinching point for the United States with a 4 & 3 victory over Ben Schmidt.

Great Britain & Ireland captain Stuart Wilson was proud despite the disappointing result.

"It's been a great weekend of golf," he said. "The guys have come out fighting and tried to acquit themselves as best they can. But hats off to the USA Team and Nathaniel for pulling the victory off."

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