Ephs storm to NESCAC title

Last weekend, men’s golf traveled to Trinity to compete in the NESCAC Championship, where they took home their first title since 2008. On Wednesday, they traveled to Hadley, Mass., for the Little Three Championship at Amherst. The men beat both Amherst and Wesleyan to take home first place.

Round One on Saturday at NESCACs saw Trinity finish with a two-stroke advantage over Williams, with score of 292 to Williams’ 290. Hamilton and Middlebury trailed the men by 12 and 15 strokes, respectively. Jake Abrahams ’14 tied for second place with Bantam Greg Palmer, two strokes behind Trinity’s Nick Buenaventura.

Dylan Dethier ’14 and Cody Semmelrock ’14 posted solid scores of 72 and 73, respectively, keeping the Bantams within reach. Jake Goldenring ’15 provided the Ephs’ final sub-80 score on Saturday at 76. Matt McCarron ’14 posted an 81 in round one.

On Sunday, the Ephs overpowered the Bantams by two strokes, earning an automatic bid to the Div. III NCAA Championship in Destin, Fla. Semmelrock won medalist honors for his one-over-par tournament. His Sunday score of 70 was also his best collegiate round, propelling him to first individual title as well. Goldenring carded Williams’ second-best Sunday score at 73. Abrahams and Goldenring both tallied two-day scores of 149, tying for seventh place.

“It was a tough battle playing Trinity at their home course,” Head Coach Josh Hillman said. “They know it so well, so we knew we had to play well going into it.”

Little Threes on Wednesday consisted of four matches of alternate shot in the morning, followed by eight singles matches in the afternoon. The men won the tiebreak against Amherst by two, preventing Amherst from earning back-to-back titles. Both Williams and Amherst beat Wesleyan 12-0.

Goldenring and Max Elgart ’16 stood out in the first round of play. The pair finished up eight holes with six to play over Wesleyan and five up with four to play over Amherst. Two other Williams pairs, co-captains Jack Ervasti ’13 and Wyatt Sparks ’13 and McCarron and Semmelrock fell short to the Jeffs after the second and third positions. Dethier and Abrahams halved their match with the Jeffs in the first position.

Abrahams posted the first win for the Ephs in singles play. The Jeffs and the Ephs both fought hard, but it was Dethier’s five-foot putt for bogey that clinched the title for the Ephs.

With the two wins last week, the Ephs have accomplished two of their three big goals that they outlined at the beginning of the season. Men’s golf will use its momentum from NESCACs looking ahead to the Div. III NCAA tournament, which will take place from May 14 to 17.

“Going forward towards NCAAs, I have five terrific players all playing well right now,” Hillman said. “I really feel we’re going to go down and play well at NCAA Championships and continue with our momentum.”