Dublin, OH (SportsNetwork.com) - Keegan Bradley and Phil Mickelson put together a stunning display of golf Friday to help the United States keep a one-point lead over the International team at The Presidents Cup.
Bradley and Mickelson, who lost their first match as a team on Thursday, went 8-under par through 11 holes en route to a 4 & 3 win over Jason Day and Graham DeLaet in the first match.
Ernie Els and Brendon de Jonge won the second match for the International team over Bill Haas and Hunter Mahan by the same 4 & 3 margin.
However, those were the only two matches completed. There was a lengthy weather delay for the second day in row, leading the rest of Friday's foursomes matches at Muirfield Village to be suspended due to darkness.
The United States leads 4 1/2 points to 3 1/2.
Play will resume Saturday morning at 7:35 a.m. ET. Saturday's scheduled fourballs matches will start at approximately 8:33 a.m. More foursomes action is slated for Saturday afternoon.
"After meeting with the captains, they thought it was in the best interest of the competition that it would be more appropriate to do the third round pairings tomorrow morning at approximately 8:00 a.m.," said Steve Carman, PGA Tour Rules Official. "We'll try start the third round at 8:33 a.m. with an hour delay to the originally published starting times. That still gives us the opportunity to finish both rounds tomorrow before dark."
Americans Steve Stricker and Jordan Spieth were 3-up through 14 holes against Branden Grace and Richard Sterne. Both teams will have eagle putts on the 15th green when play resumes.
Angel Cabrera and Marc Leishman won the 11th and 12th, but Webb Simpson poured in a 30-footer for par on the 13th to get himself and Brandt Snedeker within 1-down of the Internationals. Both teams found the 14th fairway off the tee, then agreed to stop the match there.
Tiger Woods and Matt Kuchar are 3-up after 12 holes against Louis Oosthuizen and Charl Schwartzel. Their match was stopped after Kuchar made a bogey putt to win the 12th. Oosthuizen found water off the tee, leading to a double- bogey.
In the final match, Hideki Matsuyama and Adam Scott own a 4-up lead through 11 holes against Americans Jason Dufner and Zach Johnson. Dufner is looking at a short par putt to halve the 12th hole when play resumes on Saturday.
Day birdied the first to give the Internationals a brief 1-up lead in the opening match. The teams halved the next three before the Americans caught fire.
Mickelson drained a 15-footer for eagle on the fifth, then stuffed his approach at the sixth to a foot and that birdie was conceded. Mickelson rolled an eagle putt to tap-in range on the par-5 seventh and the International failed to match as the Americans won their third straight hole.
At the eighth, Mickelson made a 6-footer for birdie and the win. Day missed a par putt on the 10th to fall 4-down. Bradley reached the par-5 11th with his second and Mickelson's eagle effort again stopped within tap-in range. Day missed a birdie chip and they were 5-down.
Day's tee shot at the 12th sailed over the green, and allowed Mickelson and Bradley to 2-putt for par and the win. The Americans were 6-up with six to go. The Internationals took the next two holes as the Americans got a little sloppy, but Bradley made a 3-foot birdie try at 15 to close out the match.
"Yesterday, we just felt a fraction off, but today we were on, starting on hole five, we played some of our best golf together," Mickelson said. "I was worried how they birdied the first two holes, we were down, but boy on five, we just turned it on and played some of our best golf, shot 30 on the front nine and made a couple more birdies the back and it was really a fun match."
As dominant as Mickelson and Bradley were in the opening match, de Jonge and Els were equally as strong in the second match.
De Jonge birdied the second and Els birdied the third to go 2-up. Els converted an eagle effort at the fifth to go 3-up. At the ninth, Mahan stuffed his second to a foot and was conceded birdie, but Els holed a bunker shot for birdie to halve the hole. That was one of five halves in a row, and after that de Jonge made another birdie at the 11th. The teams halved the next four and when de Jonge's birdie at 15 fell, the match was over.
"I feel like I've played nicely these first few days, but don't let Ernie give me all the credit," de Jonge said. "He's by far the most calming influence I've ever been out on the golf course with, and that was huge for me."
Stricker and Spieth took the third and fifth, but the Americans 3-putted for bogey at six to trim their lead to 1-up. Spieth converted birdie chances at eight and 12, while Stricker birdied the 10th as the Americans moved 4-up.
Grace hit a tremendous shot from a fairway bunker at 13 to tap-in range to cut the deficit. After the teams halved the 14th, Stricker found the green with his second at the par-5 15th. Grace failed the reach the green from the rough, and the teams stopped play there due to darkness.
"I think we really wanted to finish the match, and we really wanted obviously to end it on this hole, which is still possible. They agreed they wanted to finish this hole, but they got over their shot and realized it was too dark and decided they wanted to wait until the morning," Spieth said.
Simpson birdied the second, but Snedeker missed a par putt at six to square the match. Cabrera and Leishman took 11 with a par and Cabrera made a birdie at 12 to move 2-up. Leishman missed a birdie at 13 try to trim their lead to 1-up. Both teams were in the 14th fairway when they stopped for darkness.
Woods and Kuchar matched the front nine 30 that Mickelson and Kuchar posted, but Oosthuizen and Schwartzel were 4-under par themselves as the Americans were just 2-up at the turn.
Woods made birdies at one and six, but Schwartzel answered with a birdie at the eighth. Oosthuizen missed a par putt at nine to head to the back nine 2- down.
Oosthuizen found water off the 12th tee after Woods knocked his over the green. Kuchar chipped into a bunker to set Woods up. Woods blasted to within four feet and Kuchar made the putt for the win. They ended their match there.
Matsuyama and Scott have owned the final match. They were conceded the second, then Matsuyama made back-to-back birdies at five and six, the Americans 2- putted for birdie at seven to get one back, but Dufner missed a 9-foot birdie try at eight and they dropped 3-down.
Around the turn, the Internationals took the par-5 11th with a par, then Scott's birdie try stopped within concession range at 12. Johnson blasted within four feet and Dufner decided he'd hit that par putt in the morning.
NOTES: Friday's delay lasted two hours, 34 minutes and when play resumed preferred lies rules were put in effect ... This is the 22nd PGA Tour event that has had a weather stoppage in 2013 ... Mickelson and Bradley went 3-0 together at the Ryder Cup last year ... Today was Mickelson's 44 Presidents Cup match, the most in event history.