It was a little tougher than it first looked on Tuesday morning, but Team Europe managed to pull through and retain the Junior Solheim Cup for the first time.
Captain Gwladys Nocera’s side had stormed to a five-point lead on Day 1 at La Zagaleta in Spain after the foursomes and fourballs, and — after a valiant effort from the visitors — eventually prevailed 15-9.
Tuesday saw the singles take place, and Europe managed to pick up six wins and one draw to hoist the trophy once again.
Captain Nocera said: “Being a captain is easy when you have a team like this! We really loved the course but I think it was due to a really good preparation. These girls know how to do it and they work really hard. I have to congratulate them for all the work they have put in during the season and over these two days of completion.”
𝐂𝐨𝐧𝐠𝐫𝐚𝐭𝐮𝐥𝐚𝐭𝐢𝐨𝐧𝐬 𝐓𝐞𝐚𝐦 𝐄𝐮𝐫𝐨𝐩𝐞 🇪🇺
— Ladies European Tour (@LETgolf) September 19, 2023
With 12.5 points the target on day two, USA came out fighting as Jasmine Koo defeated Andrea Revuelta (Spain) 2&1 in the opening match.
In match two, Francesca Fiorellini (Italy) made it three wins from three as she beat Anna Davis 5&3 thanks to some incredible iron play.
Team Europe added another shortly after as Nora Sundberg (Sweden) won 4&2 against Gianna Clemente.
Despite needing just two more points to defend their title, a wave of red soon emerged on the scoreboard — Yana Wilson defeated Yana Beeli (Switzerland) on the final hole, Kathryn Ha came from three down to edge past Anna Canado (Spain) with a birdie on the last, and Leigh Chien beat Josefin Widal (Sweden) 3&2.
But with Savannah De Bock (Belgium) continuing her fine form to win 4&3 against Megan Meng, Cloe Amion (Spain) — 1-up on Elizabeth Rudisill coming down the last — was able to two putt for victory to seal the deal.
“This is a dream come true,” Amion said. “Just being here is great but to win is amazing. I didn’t know Savannah had won her match so didn’t realise it was the winning putt! But just getting it in brought so much satisfaction and happiness.”
In the concluding matches, Meja Örtengren found her best form to beat Irene Kim 4&3. Denisa Vodickova won her third match of the week defeating Anna Song 2&1.
Helen Briem (Germany) was narrowly defeated by Ryleigh Knaub 1-up, while Rocio Tojedo, the star of yesterday’s foursomes, halved her match against Asterisk Talley.
A winner in 2021, Briem said: “The first time was special because it was in America, but this one was way better. To win two times in a row is indescribable.
“I think it’s just so cool because we’re all so different. We’re from different countries but fight together. We have so many personalities which is so cool. We were really focused the last few days and the fun part is still to come. I’m really looking forward to the Solheim Cup. It’s going to be a really cool four days.”