Walker Cup Memories: Jeff Overton
|Jeff Overton secured the winning point for the 2005 USA Walker Cup Team at Chicago Golf Club. (USGA/John Mummert)|
Jeff Overton secured the winning point at Chicago Golf Club in Wheaton, Ill., for the 2005 USA Walker Cup Team, which ended an eight-year, three-Match drought for the Americans. Overton defeated Nigel Edwards, the 2013 Great Britain and Ireland captain, 1 up, in the final singles match on the course. Overton would go on to play on the 2010 U.S. Ryder Cup Team as a professional.
What did it mean for you to play in the Walker Cup?
Along with playing in the Ryder Cup, it's the highlight of my golf career. To represent your country in something like that, especially when it's kind of in your back yard in Chicago and Chicago Golf Club, is pretty special. And to play on that U.S. team was really cool because every guy on there has just kept going and is playing on the tour, so you know that it was a really good team.
What did you take from that week?
Quite a lot. As it turned out, the whole thing came down to my match and to the last hole. I remember I switched balls on the tee there and it was a No. 1 with a USA logo on it, and I got really pumped up and hit a tee shot like 340 yards. There was nothing but good vibes. I was 1 up against my opponent (Nigel Edwards) and I had just made an 8-footer for par to stay ahead on the 17th and now I need to two-putt, basically, for us to win. My captain, Bob Lewis, came up to me on the green and just said, "I know how much you want to make this putt, but just do whatever you can to get this down in two," and I hit a great putt that stopped an inch short of going in and that did it. That was a great feeling.
What did you learn about yourself or your game?
It was cool to have that much pressure and to have that much nerve to handle it. I feel like it prepared me for the next step. I was in Q-School later that year trying to get my PGA Tour card, and over the last few holes I needed to hold it together, and I managed to do OK.
- Dave Shedloski