Men’s golf finishes sixth at Middlebury Invitational

Men’s golf came in sixth at the Duke Nelson Invitational at Middlebury last weekend, where the Ephs made their season debut. Williams sent seven players, five representing the team and two competing as individuals, who faced 25 schools at the two-day tournament. The men shot 630 over the two days. RPI won the event with a combined score of 605.

Though the team finished behind host Middlebury, first-place RPI and second-place Trinity, the Ephs’ Grant Raffel ’17 secured a third-place finish individually, shooting a 148. Raffel ended the tournament on an especially high note, with a birdie on each of his last three holes — holes one through three because of the shotgun start.

Raffel’s teammates came away with solid scores as well. Co-captain Jake Goldenring ’15 shot a 160 and  led the rest of the Williams team with back-to-back finishes of 80, with Tony Liu ’16 and Jacob Watt-Morse ’17 following closely behind. Both Liu and Watt-Morse had scores of 161. Greg Stone ’16 followed with a two-day total of 170.

Though their scores didn’t count towards the team total, individual competitors Max Elgart ’16 and Ross Hoffman ’17 came away with strong tallies, too. Elgart shot a 164, and Hoffman shot a 157. Apart from a single Panther, Hoffman and Elgart were the only individual competitors at the Duke Nelson Invitational.

Though the team didn’t do as well as they had wanted to, Goldenring is confident that scores will get better over time for the young Ephs.

“We didn’t play as well as we would have liked,” Goldenring said. “But this year, we’re so much younger, so much less experienced, and it’s going to be a learning process. We want to win the Williams invite next weekend and I think we’re all buying into the fact that NESCACs is when we need to play well.”

The Ephs hope there will be better results at Taconic for the Williams Fall Invitational, which they’re hosting this coming weekend.

The men will tee off at 1 p.m. on Saturday with a shotgun start.