Men’s golf earns second place finish at ECACs

Men’s golf concluded its fall season on Oct. 13 with a friendly exhibition against Middlebury and Trinity at the Ewkwanok Country Club in Manchester, Vt. From Oct. 11 to 12, the men competed in the ECAC Championships, finishing in second place, behind NESCAC foe Trinity.

On Oct. 13, players navigated the daunting par-70 layout at Ewkwanok  and Middlebury edged out the men by six strokes to win the inaugural event.

The Ephs were led once again by Grant Raffel ’17, who posted a superb 74. Joining Raffel in the top five was classmate Ross Hoffman ’17, who carded a strong 77. Rounding out the scores for Williams were co-captain Jake Goldenring ’15 (78), Michael Stone ’16 (80) and co-captain Nate McCue ’15 (80).

On Oct. 11, the men played the first round of the ECAC Championships, hosted at the par-72 Crumpin Fox Golf Club, firing a team score of 315, good for second place. The team is nine shots off of the pace set by Trinity, who posted a superb 306.

Hoffman turned in the low score of the round with an outstanding 72 (E). Hoffman received strong support from classmate Raffel who battled for an impressive 76 (+4). In addition, Michael Stone carded a respectable 80 (+8). On a day characterized by cold, wet and windy conditions, these three Ephs found themselves well below the field average of 86 (+14). Goldenring and McCue finished with twin 87s (+15).

On Day Two, the men failed to overcome the nine-shot deficit to Trinity after a disappointing final round at the ECAC Championships.

Notably, Raffel (76-75=151) capped his fall season with his second straight victory. He edged out Trinity’s Greg Palmer by one shot.Raffel’s last win was at the NESCAC Championships, where he carded an outstanding second round 70 to win by one shot.

In addition, Hoffman (72 – 83 = 155) posted his second top-five finish of the year. His first came at the Williams Fall Invitational.

Both Raffel and Hoffman earned All-Tournament honors with their top five finishes.
In the final round, the Ephs got a needed boost from Goldenring (87 – 76 = 163), who bounced back admirably from a disappointing first round. His final round tally was the second-lowest score of the afternoon.

“Many of us are playing well at times, but we are having issues putting four scores together,” Goldenring said.

Williams ends its fall season without a win despite being in contention every tournament. As a result, the team will go into the offseason forced to contemplate potential changes to its procedures. Ultimately, players will spend the winter months preparing for the NCAA Championship Qualifier in April, which Middlebury will host for the second consecutive year.

“I’m proud of our team for the work we’ve put in this fall and I expect us to come out firing in the spring,” Goldenring added.

The next competitive round for the Ephs will be in late March when the team travels to Florida for spring break.