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Friday's Five Shots of the Day

What were the best, baddest and biggest shots of Friday's action at the 35th Ryder Cup Matches? Read on to see our list of the shots heard 'round Oakland Hills.

Don Jozwiak, Contributor
September 18, 2004

BLOOMFIELD TOWNSHIP, Mich. -- Twenty-one of the world's best golfers combined to play eight matches on Day 1 of the 35th Ryder Cup Matches on Friday. There were many amazing shots struck over the 131 holes of golf that were played at Oakland Hills Country Club, and here's a look at the five most memorable shots of the day.

No. 1: Monty Makes Magic
Team Europe's Colin Montgomerie had no shot. In afternoon foursomes play, partner Padraig Harrington had left Montgomerie in the rough over the 8th green. The pin was cut front right, and the green ran away from the hole. If Montgomerie chipped on the green, the ball would kick left and run to the other side of the green. So Monty assessed his options and decided to chip into the rough to the right of the green. His delicate shot landed in the heavy rough, gently bounced out and rolled from the fringe toward the hole. The ball stopped within gimme range, and Team Europe halved the hole. Equal parts genius, luck and courage.

No. 2: Monty Makes Magic (part 2)
In the morning four-balls, Montgomerie and Harrington combined to birdie the first four holes and take a 2-up lead over the Team USA "dream team" of Tiger Woods and Phil Mickelson. The momentum shifted when the Europeans bogeyed No. 5, and Woods and Mickelson were in position to pounce on No. 6. Montgomerie's approach shot to the par-4 was 30 feet above the hole, leaving him an impossible putt. Or not. Monty rammed it in for birdie, a foreshadowing of the remarkable putting that would do in Woods and Mickelson.

No. 3: Mickelson's Big Miss
Despite struggling all day, the team of Phil Mickelson and Tiger Woods went to the 18th hole with a chance to win the match against Darren Clarke and Lee Westwood in afternoon foursomes play. In the alternate-shot format, Mickelson teed off for Team USA. He hit a big push slice more than 40 yards left of the fairway, forcing Woods to take an unplayable lie and all but handing the match to the Europeans.

No. 4: Tiger Takes It Deep
After Mickelson hit a relatively short drive on the par-5 second hole, Woods was left with 253 yards to the hole. Woods aimed well left of the green, the let fly with a booming 3-wood. The soaring shot cut sharply toward the pin, landing in the fringe and rolling just past the pin. The ensuring birdie gave the "dream team" a 1-up lead.

No. 5: A Whole Lotta Love
Davis Love III had a tough day on Friday, losing both matches he played. But he had one especially good shot. On No. 4, Love unleashed a 365-yard drive -- most likely the longest shot of the day. It didn't lead to a Team USA win, but it gave the crowd a rare accomplishment to cheer.

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