Tiger Woods capped off a big year that began with his 15th major at the Masters by playing and leading his U.S. team to another victory in the Presidents Cup on Sunday at Royal Melbourne.
The first playing captain in 25 years, he opened the 12 singles matches by beating Abraham Ancer to set the Presidents Cup record with his 27th match victory, and set the tone for the rest of his team.
The scoreboard was filled with American red scores all day as they rallied from a two-point deficit to win the Presidents Cup for the eighth straight time against an International team that faltered at the worst time.
The final result was 16-14, and at least this one was a contest. The U.S. victory two years ago at Liberty National was so resounding that it nearly ended on Saturday.
Matt Kuchar delivered the clinching putt, a 5-footer for birdie that assured him a halve against Louis Oosthuizen and gave the Americans the 15½ points they needed to win.
Patrick Reed, whose caddie was benched for shoving a fan who had cursed Reed from close range Saturday, built a 6-up lead through seven holes before putting away C.T. Pan to win for the first time this week.
Webb Simpson, who played with Reed as they lost all three team matches, never trailed in beating Byeong Hun An. Everyone on the U.S. team contributed something.
With so much red on the board, Tony Finau might have been his team the biggest boost. He was 4 down through 10 holes against Hideki Matsuyama, won the next four holes and earned a half-point.
It came down to the final hole in South Korea four years ago. This time, the Americans were assured of a tie if the Internationals were to win the last three matches, creating at least a little drama.
But it was a familiar ending. The Americans now are 11-1-1 in an event that began in 1994.