Moon ’14 leads Yale to first place at Princeton Invitational

Seo Hee Moon ’14, far right, was the only player to record a score under 70 on the par-72 course, helping to lead Yale to a cumulative 896 over three days.
Seo Hee Moon ’14, far right, was the only player to record a score under 70 on the par-72 course, helping to lead Yale to a cumulative 896 over three days. Photo by Chawwadee Rompothong.

On Sunday, Seo Hee Moon ’14 led the women’s golf team to victory at the Princeton Invitational. The standout freshman shot rounds of 74, 68 and 71 on the par-72 course. Moon’s 68 in Saturday’s second round was the only under-70 round in the tournament.

Yale’s cumulative score of 896 over three days of play was the lowest ever for the Elis at a tournament.

Princeton took second in the tournament, trailing Yale by three strokes with a cumulative score of 899 at the Springdale Golf Club in Princeton, NJ. Other Ivy finishes included Penn in third place with a cumulative 907, Harvard in sixth and Columbia seventh. Twelve schools competed in the tournament.

All of the Bulldogs finished in the top-30 over the weekend. Harriet Owers-Bradley ’11 tied for sixth place, shooting a cumulative 224. Cassie Boles ’11 tied for 18th with a 230, Alexandra Lipa ’13 shot a 231 to tie for 20th place, and captain Alyssa Roland ’11 tied for 29th with a 233.

Through two rounds of golf on Saturday, the Elis had a two shot lead over Princeton. The Bulldogs’ second-round score of 292 was the all-time lowest score in round for the Elis.

“We’ve always been pretty good at stepping it up for the final round,” Roland said. “[With such a slight lead] you’re focused a lot more and thinking more about how every shot counts. Before every putt, I thought ‘this putt could be for the win,’ because in the end, all putts count for the same.”

Moon had another source of pressure heading into the third round on Sunday: tradition. In 2008, Callie Kemmer ’12 won her first collegiate tournament at the Nittany Lion Invitational. In 2009, Alexandra Lipa ’13 took first place in her first collegiate at the Towson Invitational.

“The team told me about the tradition,” Moon said. “But it was good pressure, I think.”

Moon said that her first day of collegiate tournament play felt a bit like she was playing in a junior tournament again because she was playing with an old friend from Washington. However, she said there was a key difference.

“I felt more like I was playing for part of a team, rather than just by myself,” she said.

Moon said her iron accuracy helped her to shoot under par. She said she did not really miss any fairways or greens during the tournament.

This weekend gave the Bulldogs an opportunity to evaluate the Ivy competition. Roland concluded that Yale, Penn, Princeton and Harvard are all in contention for the Ivy League title.

Owers-Bradley added that Yale has an old team this year because there are three seniors, while both Penn and Princeton lost a few strong seniors. However, she said it is difficult to tell after only one tournament where things stand.

These teams will meet again at the Harvard Invitational in mid-October.

Until then, the Bulldogs have their own tournament, the Yale Invitational, to look forward to next weekend.

Head coach Chawwadee Rompothong ’00 said Penn, Brown, and Dartmouth will attend the tournament along with teams outside of the Ivy League. She added the same Yale players who competed in the Princeton Invitational will compose next weekend’s roster.

“We do have home-course advantage, and we do know the course well,” Rompothong said. “Yet there is some added pressure with that. There’s always higher expectations [on the home course]…but I think this group is pretty strong mentally and knows to play one shot at a time.”

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