JERSEY CITY, N.J. — President Donald Trump looked over at an American team that never had it so easy in the Presidents Cup and delivered an unassailable message in fewer than 140 characters.
"I have to say our Team USA, wow. Did you play well," Trump said.
The Americans were never better.
They didn't become the first team to win all five sessions, the only source of motivation on Sunday. They didn't win by the widest margin since these matches against the International team began in 1994.
So powerful was this U.S. team that it needed to do little more than show up.
Daniel Berger, one of five newcomers to the American team, delivered the decisive point in the fourth of 12th singles matches. Phil Mickelson, a part of 23 consecutive team events, won the final point in his 100th career singles match.
The score was 19-11, and it could have been worse.
"Honestly, it was really weird being out there today, knowing there was no chance of losing," Dustin Johnson who halved his match on the final hole to miss out on a 5-0 mark at Liberty National. "I don't know how to explain it, but it was like playing golf with my buddies. We were going to win no matter what."
Two years after the Presidents Cup came down to the final two matches in South Korea, this one nearly ended on Saturday.
"This is a juggernaut of a U.S. team," said Nick Price, in his third and final stint of the International captain, all of them losses. "They're an overpowering team that played some phenomenal golf. It was tough to watch, especially being on the receiving end."
The Americans won for the seventh time, and the eight-point margin was their widest since 2000 at the Robert Trent Jones Golf Club in Virginia.
The only suspense was the trophy presentation.
Trump was the first sitting president to attend the final day of matches, and he stuck around to hand out the cup.
"I thought it was a great thrill," Stricker said. "I thought it was a great opportunity for us to be with him. And this tournament is about respecting the office, respecting the president of the United States, and whether your views may be one way versus another, that wasn't what it was about out there on the green. It was about us getting together as a team, playing for one another, playing for the USA and it was a great thrill for all of us to get the trophy handed to us from him."
Inside the ropes, it was all about domination.
"They came in here riding a ton of momentum and a ton of confidence," Stricker said. "It was about getting out of their way."
So loaded were the Americans but all but one of their 12-man team — Mickelson — reached the FedEx Cup finale at the Tour Championship last week. Three of them won majors this year. And they all were at their best against an International team that had no chance.
"It was a bit of a slaughtering this week," said Adam Scott, who played in his eighth Presidents Cup and still doesn't know what it's like to win.
Scott, Jason Day and Hideki Matsuyama, largely ineffective during the team formats, finally showed some semblance of their games and won matches on Sunday. Day ended a streak of nine success Presidents Cup matches without winning. Matsuyama had to be at his best. He made or was conceded eight birdies and an eagle, and he still had to go 17 holes before beating PGA champion Justin Thomas.
Jordan Spieth still hasn't won a singles match in his five appearances at the Presidents Cup or Ryder Cup, though he didn't lose his sense of humor. So lopsided were the matches that Patrick Reed said the Americans could have suited up only three players on Sunday and still figured out how to get one point.
"Not if I was one of them," Spieth said at his self-deprecating best.
The International team was left to figure out how to make it close, much less win. Price successfully reduced the total number of matches the last time from 34 to 30 because fewer matches would help keep it close. No change in format or anything else would have prevented this one-sided affair.
"We all love playing in it," Price said. "It's just a question of how do we make it a little bit competitive."
The Americans were already looking ahead — not to 2019 when the Presidents Cup returns to Melbourne, but next year in France for the Ryder Cup. The Americans had six players in their 20s at the Presidents Cup, which figures to form a core for years to come.
"You start to kind of look forward and wonder where this momentum could take us," Spieth said.
Capsules from the singles matches Sunday at the Presidents Cup:
Marc Leishman, International, halved with Kevin Chappell, United States.
The Americans needed only one point to win the Presidents Cup, and Chappell started out as if he wanted it to be him. He holed a bunker shot for eagle on No. 2 and birdied the next two holes in building a 2-up lead. Leishman caught him when Chappell hit into the water on the par-5 ninth and hit his tee shot into a TV tower on No. 10. Leishman went 1 up twice on the back nine, and Chappell squared the match twice with pars. On the 18th, Chappell missed from 20 feet, and Leishman missed from 15 feet for a halve.
Jason Day, International, def. Charley Hoffman, United States, 2 and 1.
Day had gone nine straight matches without a win in the Presidents Cup and finally put some semblance of his game together. Hoffman stayed with him on the front nine, and took a 1-up lead at the turn with a birdie at the par-5 ninth. Day holed a 15-foot birdie putt on No. 10 to square the match, won the next hole when Hoffman drove into the trees and went 2 up on the 12th when Hoffman drove into the water. Hoffman could have had the clinching match with a halve, but his bogey on the 17th gave Day his first outright victory since 2013.
Hideki Matsuyama, International, def. Justin Thomas, United States, 3 and 1.
Thomas made eight birdies and really didn't stand a chance against Matsuyama, whose game had disappeared over the last month. Matsuyama at one point played a nine-hole stretch in 8-under par, including an eagle on the par-5 fourth when he carved a shot around the trees and onto the green. Thomas conceded a 10-foot birdie on the 17th for the final margin. Matsuyama on the card was 9 under when it ended on the 17th hole.
Daniel Berger, United Stated, def. Si Woo Kim, International, 2 and 1.
Berger never trailed in this match, taking the second hole when Kim twice went into the water. Kim did his best to make it entertaining, especially after a long birdie putt on No. 11 after Berger had chipped in for birdie. Kim put his finger to his lips to shush the crowd, much like Patrick Reed did in Scotland at the Ryder Cup in 2014. Kim conceded the 13th hole to fall 3 down, and Berger went dormie at the 15th to clinch the Presidents Cup.
Charl Schwartzel, International, def. Matt Kuchar, United States, 1 up.
Schwartzel was so ineffective that he was benched all of Saturday. He wound up winning the wildest match of the day. Schwartzel was 5 up through seven holes, and still 4 up when Kuchar bogeyed the 11th. Kuchar won the next three holes with two birdies and a par to get to 1 down. He was still 1 down playing the par-3 18th but went into a swale over the green and charged his putt over a ridge, past the hole and off the green. Pars were conceded. Only five of the 18 holes were halved.
Louis Oosthuizen, International, def. Patrick Reed, United States, 1 up.
Oosthuizen and Reed played to a draw in South Korea two years ago and they nearly did again. Neither player led by more than 1 up the entire match, though Reed had the least most of the day with birdies on No. 2 and a par at No. 7. He took his last lead with a birdie on the 15th, but Oosthuizen answered with a birdie on the 17th to square the match. On the final hole, with Oosthuizen 10 feet away for birdie, Reed missed the green, chipped out to 12 feet, missed his par putt and conceded.
Branden Grace, International, halved Dustin Johnson, United States.
Johnson had a chance to become the sixth player with a 5-0 record in the Presidents Cup, and he broke out to a 2-up lead through three holes and had control of the match for most of the day, even though the cup already had been won. Grace got the match back to square through 14 holes until Johnson birdied the 15th to go 1 up. Johnson missed the fairway and made bogey on the 17th to square the match, and then missed a 20-foot birdie chance from the fringe to settle for a halve.
Adam Scott, International, def. Brooks Koepka, United States, 3 and 2.
Scott was 0-3 going into singles and it didn't look good early, especially when his 4-foot par putt didn't touch the hole at No. 3 and Koepka birdied the next hole to go 2 up. It stayed that way at the turn. Scott made a 12-foot birdie on the 10th, and then won four straight holes, all of them in birdie range, three of the putts conceded. He closed out Koepka by halving the 16th with pars.
Jhonattan Vegas, International, def. Jordan Spieth, United States, 2 and 1.
This was a battle of former Texas Longhorns, and it was a battle for Spieth to try to win his first singles match in the Presidents Cup or Ryder Cup. That will have to wait until next year. Spieth lost an early lead when he made bogey at No. 8 and then came up short and into the water on the par-5 ninth. Spieth hit into the water again on No. 12 to fall 4 down. The match was dormie after 14 holes when Spieth won the next two holes, but he missed a birdie on the 17th to end the match.
Anirban Lahiri, International, halved with Kevin Kisner, United States.
Lahiri went 2 up through five holes until Kisner caught him at the turn and then went 1 up when Lahiri couldn't hit the green at No. 10. Kisner had control from there as Lahiri kept making bad decisions with club selection, and the American appeared to have this won at 2 up with two holes to play. Kisner missed the 17th green in an awkward spot and made bogey, and he missed the 18th green and conceded the hole to Lahiri for a halve.
Phil Mickelson, United States, def. Adam Hadwin, International, 2 and 1.
This was the last match remaining on the golf course, and after Mickelson drove into the water on No. 1 and lost the hole with a double bogey, he took over. He birdie three of his next four holes to build a 3-up lead, and the Canadian never got any closer than 2 down the rest of the way. Hadwin won the 16th with a par when Mickelson missed from 5 feet, but they halved the 17th for the final point in a 19-11 victory.
Rickie Fowler, United States, def. Emiliano Grillo, International, 6 and 4.
The last match turned out to be the shortest, and one of only three matches in which the International team never led. Grillo took a double bogey on the second hole and never caught up. He was only 1 down through eight when Fowler won five of the next six holes, only three of them with birdies. Grillo became the only player at this Presidents Cup who lost every match he played.