Tiger Woods falls to Jon Rahm, finishes 0-4 at Ryder Cup

PARIS -- After a triumphant victory a week ago in which he stood on the 18th green in Atlanta with his arms raised in glory, Tiger Woods never even made it to the 18th hole at Le Golf National during the Ryder Cup.

His return to the competition ended with a thud on the 17th green Sunday as Spain's Jon Rahm closed out a 2-and-1 victory over Woods with an emphatic iron shot to close range and a birdie.

With the European celebration engulfing the green, Woods could only take off his cap and wish congratulations to the victors before retreating to a spot off to the side with his girlfriend, Erica Herman. He got pats on the shoulder from several European players, including Rory McIlroy and Justin Rose.

Undeniably spent after the emotion of his win a week ago and an 18-tournament schedule, Woods would not go so far as to say he was hurt or diminished, hinting only that something was missing in France.

"It's been a long grind,'' Woods said in a brief interview with ESPN.com. "This is my seventh out of ninth week I believe. I've been grinding at it, working at it for a long time. And unfortunately here, I just didn't get it done.''

Woods finished 0-4, the worst record of any player in the competition, and the first time he's been shut out in eight Ryder Cups. His last victory in the Ryder Cup came in 2010, when he defeated Francesco Molinari -- who along with Tommy Fleetwood helped deal Woods three team defeats this week -- in singles.

It was a harsh end to what had been an incredible year for Woods, 42, who returned from multiple back surgeries without much idea how he would fare, and rose from 656th in the world to 13th, capping his PGA Tour season with his 80th victory a week ago at the Tour Championship.

In 18 tournaments, Woods posted seven top-10 finishes and ended up second in the FedEx Cup to Rose.

The Sunday loss was Woods' first in singles since losing to Italy's Costantino Rocca at his first Ryder Cup in 1997 and dropped him to 4-2-2 in that format. His overall record is now 13-21-3, giving him the second-most losses in American team history -- behind Phil Mickelson, who lost both of his matches this week and has now lost 22 times.

Woods seemed to have more energy on Sunday, and he hit a number of good shots. But Rahm birdied the first hole and Woods never led.

"I hit more good shots but still I was down early,'' Woods said. "Being 2 down I had to fight just to get back to all square. Then I messed up at 13, consequently I went 0-4 this week. It's a big contributing factor to why we lost. That's four points to their side and none to our side.''

The U.S. has two Hall of Famers for sure in Woods and Mickelson, who combined to go 0-6. And No.-1 ranked Dustin Johnson went 1-3, with none of those three ever playing together. So out of 10 possible points they played for, the trio came up with just one.

"I think he's frustrated and disappointed because he knows he was playing well coming into the tournament,'' said caddie Joe LaCava. "But I don't think he's going to let it spoil the year that he had. It is going to sting for a while. Didn't win a match and that hurts. But you know what? Better things are ahead.''