Great Britain & Ireland's defence of the Walker Cup came to an end with a dramatic 12½-11½ defeat by the United States in Chicago on Sunday.
Wolstenholme broke a points record but ended on the losing side
The visitors were aiming for a fourth successive Walker Cup triumph.
But Jeff Overton's one-hole win against Nigel Edwards handed the US the trophy for the first time since 1997.
Gary Wolstenholme's win in the singles on Sunday afternoon saw him become Great Britain & Ireland's all-time record points scorer with 10 points.
Trailing 8½-7½ after the morning's foursomes, Great Britain & Ireland produced a battling display in the afternoon singles before succumbing.
Wolstenholme, 44, secured a point as he held off a late fightback from Anthony Kim to win their encounter on the 18th.
Wolstenholme now has 10 points from 19 Walker Cup ties, eclipsing the record set by Sir Michael Bonallack, who collected 9½ points from his 25 ties.
FINAL SINGES RESULTS
US names first
Kim lost to Wolstenholme 1 hole
Harman bt Davies 6&5
Putnam halved with Fisher
Every halved with Dinwiddie
Holmes lost to Richardson 5&4
Reifers lost to Saltman 1 hole
Overton bt Edwards 1 hole
Williams bt Lockerbie 4&3
Matthew Richardson, the European champion, then contributed another vital point as he swept to a 5&4 win over the big-hitting John Holmes.
Following Welshman Rhys Davies' 5&4 defeat by Brian Harman, Richardson's win meant that both sides were locked on 9½ points with five matches left out on the course.
Essex 16-year-old Oliver Fisher, the youngest player to compete in the Walker Cup, secured a half against Michael Putnam after rolling in an 18-foot putt for birdie on the final green.
There was further drama on the 18th as Robert Dinwiddie chipped in to grab a remarkable half against Matt Every and take the visitors to within one-and-a-half points of success.
The pendulum swung back in favour of the US as Lee Williams eased to a 4&3 win over Lytham Trophy winner Gary Lockerbie.
But in another amazing twist on the 18th, Lloyd Saltman rolled in a 35-foot birdie putt to complete a rousing fightback against Kyle Reifers to haul Great Britain & Ireland back onto level terms.
That meant the contest went down to the final hole of the match between Welshman Edwards and American Overton.
Edwards, who holed the putt that secured victory for Great Britain & Ireland in the 2003 contest at Ganton, was one down coming down the last and needed to half his match for the holders to retain the trophy.
But his approach to the 18th green landed 25 feet from the pin and the Welshman could only manage par, handing the Americans the point they needed to reclaim the Walker Cup.
Great Britain and Ireland captain Garth McGimpsey praised his players' efforts.
"I am proud of all my players," said McGimpsey. "They gave it their all and I can't complain. It has been another great Walker Cup and it went down to the wire.
"The matches these days are so close and that is wonderful for the
US skipper Bob Lewis, who will now stand down from the role after ending a run of three successive defeats, hailed his side as one of the greatest American teams in the history of the event.
"I am very emotional," said Lewis. "I have been around a lot of Walker Cups and I can tell you that this is probably the greatest Walker Cup team that has played.
"I am so proud of my team. They acted as a team. It's the way you dream about going out as captain."