Following up on an outstanding performance last week on its home course, men’s golf took second place with a total of 597 at the NESCAC Golf Fall Qualifier this weekend, finishing just behind Middlebury’s winning score of 585. A top four finish in this tournament was crucial for the team to qualify for the NESCAC Championship, and proved to be an easy accomplishment. Unfortunately, however, the chance to host the championship at home slipped past Williams, as first-place finisher Middlebury claimed the advantage.
The team shot a 302 on Day Two of the tournament at Shuttle Meadow Country Club. Co-captain Bob Camp ’11 posted a stellar Sunday round of a one-under 70, which landed him in a tie for fifth place overall. Co-captain Drew Murray ’11 held onto a 77, while fellow co-captain Jake Wagner ’11 trailed just behind Murray with a 78 on Sunday. The Ephs finished in 11th and 12th overall, respectively. Co-captain Jack Killea ’11 shot a 79, and Jack Ervasti ’13 posted a 77 to put them in a tie for 17th individually.
The men started the tournament on Saturday with an impressive total of 295, which tied them for first with Middlebury. Leading the team were Murray and Wagner, both carding one-over par 72s. Camp followed with a 75, while Killea tallied a 76 and Ervasti finished with a 78 to round out the day. By the end of the day, the Ephs had securely positioned themselves not only to qualify for the NESCACs but possibly to win the tournament as well.
“I felt during the round that we needed to settle back into just making pars and let the scores play out as they should,” Head Coach Rick Pohle said.
The conditions on the course provided a challenge for all teams with high winds and chilly air. However, the greens were rolled nicely, allowing for maximum birdie opportunities. This week’s heavy rains made the course play much longer than normal.
“We were a little disappointed that we put ourselves in a position to win and we couldn’t close it out,” Camp said. “We’re happy to qualify and that our goal of reaching NCAAs is still alive.”
The Ephs play again at the Hamilton Invitational in Clinton, NY, this weekend, where they will round out this fall’s remarkable performance.
“We will finish off the fall … by getting a few underclassmen into our next event for experience and then prepare for the match play finale the following week,” Pohle said. “We need to select a couple of candidates to fill out our spring trip roster for March, which will be crucial to determining the top players who will play in matches in the spring.”