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US Team increases lead on Saturday at Presidents Cup

By Kyle Porter | Golf Writer

Matt Kuchar and Tiger Woods defeated Adam Scott and Hideki Matsuyama 2UP on Saturday at Muirfield Village. (USATSI)
Matt Kuchar and Tiger Woods defeated Adam Scott and Hideki Matsuyama 2UP on Saturday at Muirfield Village. (USATSI)

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It felt like it lasted for a week but the morning matches are finally over and the US Team rolled the International Team for the first session of the week.

The US side took four of the five matches to take a 10.5 to 6.5 lead for the week -- punctuated by a huge Matt Kuchar birdie at No. 18 for the final full point of the morning session.

Here's a look at how all five played out:

Match 1

Phil Mickelson and Keegan Bradley defeat Brendon de Jonge and Ernie Els 2 and 1 -- Bradley and Mickelson are so difficult to beat in match play because they're both able to ride the emotion of the crowd so well.

Saturday morning was no different as the duo combined to make six birdies on the back nine and easily stave off de Jonge and Els.

Match 2

Jason Day and Graham DeLaet defeat Steve Stricker and Jordan Spieth 1UP -- Spieth and Stricker were the last US pairing to trail in this event and it didn't happen until hole No. 9 on the match.

DeLaet made a monster birdie on No. 16 to take the lead for good, though and the International Team stopped the bleeding momentarily.

Match 3

Bill Haas and Webb Simpson defeat Angel Cabrera and Branden Grace 4 and 3 -- This was the first match of the morning to finish as Simpson and Haas pretty easily finished off the Cabrera-Grace duo. Grace actually lipped out a chip on No. 15 that would have ended the match.

Simpson and Haas "ham and egged" their match really well as Simpson noted to Steve Sands of NBC afterwards.

"It helps in a team competition that you have somebody you can feed off of," he said.

"I don't think we birdied the same hole," added Haas.

Match 4

Brandt Snedeker and Hunter Mahan defeat Louis Oosthuizen and Charl Schwartzel 2UP -- It wasn't pretty at times (Mahan hit a ball backwards off a rock) but they traded pars over the last five holes to close out a match they never trailed.

Nevertheless, Snedeker told Steve Sands of NBC they would have liked to have gotten the job done earlier.

"It got a lot closer than we wanted it to get on the back nine," said Snedeker.

Match 5

Tiger Woods and Matt Kuchar defeat Adam Scott and Hideki Matsuyama 2UP -- Matsuyama made a pretty clutch birdie on No. 16 to get within one but Kuchar ended it in a big way with a fist-pumping birdie on No. 18.

After the match Kuchar gave Woods a lot of credit for carrying him.

"This guy's a horse," he said.

Woods won four holes to Kuchar's two.

So the US will take a four-point lead to the afternoon matches which should be enough for them to really take hold of the week with a decent showing.

For more golf news, rumors and analysis, follow @EyeOnGolf and @KylePorterCBS on Twitter or Google+ and like us on Facebook.

 
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