Rookies power women’s golf to 3rd

Women’s golf took third place this weekend at Amherst’s Jack Leaman Women’s Intercollegiate Golf Championship in South Hadley, Mass. The women’s weekend total of 677 put them 10 strokes behind Amherst, who took second, and 26 strokes behind Methodist, who took first.

The second round took place at the Orchards Country Club where, in the fall season, the team shot a record-shattering two-day total of 615 (304-311), winning the title at the Mount Holyoke Invitational. The Ephs’ good feelings about the Orchards helped them to shoot a second-day total of 329, a 19-stroke improvement from the first round. The Ephs’ round consisted of a 77 from rookie Georgiana Salant ’14 combined with three 84s posted by Emily Wickstrom ’14, Becky Miller ’13 and Victoria Student ’13. Aimee Weber ’11 rounded out the team scores with a 91. Despite a second-round tie with Amherst, the women were unable to move up from third place.

Commenting on the team’s significant improvement from Saturday, Head Coach Erika DeSanty said, “We regained our confidence on Sunday. Every player improved, and we posted a team score to be proud of. Georgi also had a terrific weekend, and as a first-year, to finish ahead of such seasoned competitors was a great accomplishment.” Salant made a strong improvement from day one: Her total of 159 came from a day one score of 82 and a day two card of 77. The rookie was able to claim the individual runner-up position, one stroke behind medalist Kimberly Eaton from Wellesley.

The elements on Sunday made for difficult playing conditions, as the weather oscillated between sunny, windy and rainy. The soggy, aerated greens and soaked fairways from an overnight rainstorm made the Orchards a challenge for all competitors. The New England weather was no match for Methodist’s team, however, and witnessing the champions’ play benefitted the women. DeSanty recognized the advantage of the women analyzing the first-place team’s round: “To be out on the course with the defending national champions of 13 years was exactly what we needed this season,” DeSanty said. “We are talented, but we are young and lack experience against teams of their caliber. This weekend gave us a great indication of where we are and all we need to do over the next few weeks to be able to compete with the best in the nation.”

The first day of the Jack Leaman tournament was held at Hickory Ridge Country Club. Williams posted a 348: Salant shot an 82, Wickstrom and Student both posted scores of 88, Miller finished the day at 90 and Weber came in at 95. The women’s scores put them 10 strokes behind Amherst’s 338 and 16 strokes behind Methodist’s solid 332 after the conclusion of play on Saturday.
The Ephs’ next tournament will be the Williams Spring Invitational, which will be held on April 30 and May 1 at Williams’ home Taconic Golf Club.