BLOOMFIELD TOWNSHIP, Mich. – Over here, over there, it no longer matters. Europe again proved to be the best in the Ryder Cup (search) with another romp over the Americans.
Lee Westwood (search) ended any remaining suspense at Oakland Hills with a 4-foot par putt on the final hole to beat Kenny Perry (search) on Sunday. With Colin Montgomerie 1-up playing the 18th and assured of a half-point, Europe had the 14 points it needed to capture the Ryder Cup for the fourth time in the last five tries.
It also left little doubt as to who the underdogs are now.
The Europeans are not only winning, they are winning big.
Montgomerie also holed a 4-foot par putt on the 18th to beat David Toms, pushing the total to 141/2 points for an outright victory. The only thing left to decide was the size of their margin, and they had a chance for their biggest rout ever. There were five matches still in progress, and Europe led in four of them.
"It's been a tremendous week," European captain Bernhard Langer said.
For the United States, it was another disappointment in matches they once dominated. The Americans have the higher world ranking, more majors, greater star power.
But when it comes to the Ryder Cup, it's no contest.
The Europeans won for only the third time on U.S. soil, and they made sure there was no rally like Brookline five years ago when the Americans stormed back from a 10-6 deficit by putting its best players at the top of the lineup and riding a tidal wave of momentum.
Tiger Woods finally did his part, the only player not to lose a single hole in an easy victory over Paul Casey. The Americans had early leads in the first five matches as cheers of "USA! USA!" rang out across the course, the crowd trying to urge them to pull off another improbable comeback.
But just as it has gone all week, the Americans simply couldn't keep it up.
Sergio Garcia made three straight birdies to quickly turn the tide against Phil Mickelson, then won the match when Lefty tried to play a knockdown shot that went into the water on the 16th.
Darren Clarke was two holes behind with three to play when he made an 8-foot birdie on the 16th, chipped in from behind the green on the 17th to square the match and wound up halving his match with Davis Love III.
Westwood also rallied from a two-hole deficit early in his match, winning the 15th with a par to go 1 up and then holing his cup-clinching putt to seal the victory.
"I had a fair idea the way everyone was biting their nails," Westwood said when asked whether he knew his putt was for the Ryder Cup.
This was no nail-biter. It was a blowout from start to finish.
Europe led 11-5 going into the 12 singles matches and needed only three points to retain the cup. Five matches were still in progress when European fans began lustily singing "Ole, Ole, Ole, Ole!" and players swarmed Langer with hugs.
"The Europeans are great," U.S. captain Hal Sutton. "They played ferociously. There are a lot of great players in America, but we got outplayed this week."