OTTERSHAW, Surrey, England (Sept. 15, 2017) – Rod Perry of Port Orange, Florida, and Jamie Broce of Indianapolis teamed for 10 birdies to roll to a 3 and 2 four-ball victory Friday morning, sparking the United States’ 3-1 opening session performance in the 28th PGA Cup.
Perry, the 2013 PGA Professional Champion and PGA Head Professional at Crane Lakes Golf & Country Club in Port Orange, was the last to arrive on site Wednesday due to Hurricane Irma.
He was the first off the tee and joined by Broce, the men’s and women’s head coach at Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis. They dominated the Great Britain & Ireland duo of Greig Hutcheon and Damien McGrane, capped by Perry’s chip-in birdie from 30 yards on the par-3 16th hole.
“When you get off to a start like that, you are able to relax a bit,” said Perry, who had just two days warm-up. “The greens are very soft and we are not having to play that first bounce like we normally do.
MORE: Photos from Day 1
“Getting through the hurricane, and knowing that Jaclyn (his wife) and the kids are OK, and knowing that none of us sustained any damage, is obviously a big sigh of relief.
“I’m the kind of guy who can play too much golf and you can get too burned out and thankfully I’ve never had to do that. When you are playing with Jamie, it’s easy. He drives the ball so well, you have a competitive advantage off the tee.”
“I was super excited to be paired with Rod,” said Broce. “He’s a gamer. He knows how to get the job done under pressure. He got us off to a fantastic start. He was really mean on that last shot (a hole-out for birdie on No. 16).”
That match ignited two consecutive rallies for the Americans.
Rich Berberian Jr., the 2016 PGA Professional Champion from Hooksett, New Hampshire, and Adam Rainaud of Chester, Connecticut edged the English duo of Robert Coles and Chris McDonnell, 2 and 1.
Meet the US team | Scores
“We were down early, but played steady and ham-and-egged it and played well at the end,” said Rainaud. “They did us a favor with two bogeys on the front nine. If not, we would have been going down 18.”
Said Berberian, “On 17, I hit it a little left came down in the trees, I had an opening, hit the wrong tree, and then I hit what I thought was a good approach to five feet. But, I heard the ball land and then saw it ricochet right. I really wanted to make that thing. It went in.”
Mark Brown of Oyster Bay, New York and Matt Dobyns of Glen Head, New York, won four holes on the back nine, highlighted by Brown’s 25-foot birdie putt at No. 17 for a 2-up victory over England’s Phillip Archer and Andrew Raitt.
“We caught a little fire on the back, Matt started striping it and we gave them a little match down the stretch,” said Brown, the PGA Head Professional at Tam O’Shanter Club in Glen Head, New York. “(Phillip) Archer hit a great shot on 14 to eight feet for eagle. Then, Matt hit a career shot, a 5-iron from 212 yard in the rough and stuffed it to a foot for his eagle. That flipped the switch and we kind of turned the tide.”
Said Dobyns, “I think about every match I’ve played has gone to 18, and I don’t know why this would be an different. I’ve been on the other end of this, too, and I know what the other guys are feeling. We made one more putt coming down the stretch and snuck one out on them.”
GB&I’s Christopher Currie and David Higgins grabbed the anchor match of the morning, 3 and 2, upending reigning PGA Professional Champion Omar Uresti of Austin, Texas, and Paul Claxton of Claxton, Georgia.
Rod Perry, Port Orange, Fla. & Jamie Broce, Indianapolis
Greig Hutcheon, Scotland & Damien McGrane, Ireland, 3 and 2
Perry, the PGA Head Professional at Crane Lakes Golf & Country Club in Port Orange, Florida, got off to a rousing start with partner Jamie Broce of Indianapolis, collecting four birdies on the first six holes, building a 3-up lead over Scotland’s Greig Hutcheon and Ireland’s Damien McGrane. Broce offset a lost hole at No. 7 by birdieing the par-4 eighth to give the Americans a 3-up advantage through the opening nine holes.
Broce’s birdie at No. 10, increased the margin to four holes before Hutcheon struck back with a birdie at No. 12. Perry then answered with a birdie at No. 13 to again build a 4-up margin. McGrane chipped in from off the left fringe for birdie on No. 15 to trim the margin to two holes, before Perry closed the match by pitching from 30 yard off the green for a deuce at No. 16.
Rich Berberian Jr., Hooksett, N.H. & Adam Rainaud, Chester, Conn.
Robert Coles, England & Chris McDonnell, England, 2 and 1
Adam Rainaud and Rich Berberian Jr., who met twice in the 2015 and 2016 PGA Match Play Championship finals, teamed for their first PGA Cup match against the English duo of Robert Coles and Chris McDonnell.
Coles birdies at Nos. 4 and 5 gave his team a 2-up lead before Berberian’s par at No. 6 and a Rainaud pair of birdies at Nos. 7 and 8 turned momentum around to gain a 1-up lead through nine holes.
Berberian boosted the lead to 3-up with birdies at No. 10 and 13. GB&I battled back to win the 16th hole with a birdie, and Berberian ended the match in spectacular fashion on No. 17. After his second shot from the woods hit a tree and ended up across the fairway in the right rough, he hit an approach shot that ricocheted off Coles’ ball on the middle of the green. Coles replaced his ball 20 feet below the hole and Berberian rolled home a 40-foot par putt from the fringe. Coles then missed his birdie attempt.
Matt Dobyns, Glen Head, N.Y. & Mark Brown, Oyster Bay, N.Y.
Phillip Archer, Warrington, England & Andrew Raitt, England, 1 up
Andrew Raitt, who lives only 10 minutes from Foxhills Golf Club, took advantage of his course familiarity to birdie three of the first eight holes, along with a winning par at No. 7 for a 2-up advantage over Matt Dobyns and Mark Brown. Phillip Archer then added a birdie at No. 9 to hike GB&I’s lead to three holes. Dobyns trimmed the deficit to two holes with a birdies at 11 and 13, then followed Archer’s second shot to the par-5 14th to 20 feet by hitting a 5-iron from 212 yards to less than a foot for a tap-in eagle. Brown brought the match to all square with a birdie at No. 15 and rolled home a 25-footer from the left fringe for birdie at No. 17 for a 1-up lead. Dobyns reached the par-5 18th hole in two, and lagged his birdie putt to two feet. Archer and Raitt each missed their birdie attempts.
Chris Currie, Clydebank, Scotland & David Higgins, Ireland
Omar Uresti, Austin, Texas & Paul Claxton, Claxton, Ga., 3 and 2
Scotland’s Chris Currie birdied the par-3 fourth hole, the only birdie between the two teams through seven holes, for a 1-up margin. David Higgins then birdied No. 8 to build GB&I’s lead to 2 up. Omar Uresti and Paul Claxton, with nine straight pars and a bogey at No. 9, failed to gain any momentum. A birdie by Higgins at No. 10 hiked the GB&I advantage to 4 up. Uresti trimmed the deficit to 2 up after making a birdie at No. 13 and an eagle at 14. GB&I’s Higgins then closed the match on 17 with a birdie.
Captain: Paul Levy, Indian Wells, Calif.
Rich Berberian Jr., Hooksett, N.H.
Jamie Broce, Indianapolis, Ind.
Mark Brown, Oyster Bay, N.Y.
Paul Claxton, Claxton, Ga.
Matt Dobyns, Glen Head, N.Y.
Dave McNabb, Newark, Del.
Rod Perry, Port Orange, Fla.
Adam Rainaud, Chester, Conn.
Josh Speight, Locust Hill, Va.
Omar Uresti, Austin, Texas
Great Britain & Ireland
Captain: Albert MacKenzie, Devon, England
Phillip Archer, Warrington, Cheshire, England
Robert Coles, Romford, Essex, England
Matthew Cort, Leicester, England
Christopher Currie, Clydebank, Dunbartonshire, Scotland
David Higgins, Killarney, County Kerry, Ireland
Gary Houston, Wrexham, Clwyd, Wales
Greig Hutcheon, Banchory, Aberdeenshire, Scotland
Chris McDonnell, Chichester, West Sussex, England
Damien McGrane, Kells, County Meath, Ireland
Andrew Raitt, London, England
Friday Morning Four-Balls
Rod Perry, Port Orange, Fla. & Jamie Broce, Indianapolis, Ind. (USA) def. Greig Hutcheon, Banchory, Aberdeenshire, Scotland & Damien McGrane, County Meath, Ireland (GB&I), 3 and 2
Rich Berberian Jr., Hooksett, N.H. & Adam Rainaud, Chester, Conn. (USA) def. Robert Coles, Romford, Essex, England & Chris McDonnell, Chichester, England (GB&I), 2 and 1
Matt Dobyns, Glen Head, N.Y. & Mark Brown, Oyster Bay, N.Y. (USA) def. Phillip Archer, Warrington, England & Andrew Raitt, London, England (GB&I), 2 up
Chris Currie, Clydebank, Dunbartonshire, Scotland & David Higgins, Killarney, Count Kerry, Ireland (GB&I) def. Omar Uresti, Austin, Texas & Paul Claxton, Claxton, Ga. (USA), 3 and 2
USA 3, Great Britain & Ireland 1
Experts on the business and game of golf. The best coaching tips and latest golf news delivered straight to you. Sign Up to get the latest.