Last week the Bulldogs edged out Harvard by five strokes. This week, the Crimson topped Yale by three just as professional golfer Jordan Spieth fell to Bubba Watson by three strokes at the Masters.
In the Elis’ final tournament before the Yale Spring Invitational, the men’s golf team took second place at the Princeton Invitational with a total score of 835. In attempting to defend the Princeton Invitational title, the Bulldogs beat out 13 teams, including six Ivies, but were unable to bring down the Crimson despite shooting 33 strokes fewer than last year’s Princeton Invitational-winning score.
“Harvard is our stiffest competition within the Ivy League,” Will Davenport ’15 said. “They are a deep team and deserve a lot of respect … we have to tip our caps to them for their outstanding play this weekend. We will see them again next weekend at our home tournament, so we will have another chance to match up before the Ivy League Championship.”
The Crimson had the top two individual performances of the 54-hole tournament with Akash Mirchandani shooting a 67, 66 and 72 for a total of 205 and Robert Deng shooting a 67, 69 and 70 for a total of 206.
Yale’s top performer, Davenport, tied for the fourth-best performance at the Springdale Golf Club, shooting a 73, 69 and 67 for a total score of 209. Joe Willis ’16 came in behind Davenport in a tie for the sixth-best performance, shooting a 74, 70 and 66 for a total of 210. Overall, the Bulldogs shot very close performances, with Jonathan Lai ’17, captain Sam Bernstein ’14 and Sean Gaudette ’14 finishing with 211, 214 and 215 strokes, respectively.
Improving scores as the tournament progressed was a common occurrence for the Elis, as they made a comeback on the second day of competition. At the end of day one, the Bulldogs were behind the Crimson by 14 strokes, but they were able to cut that down to three by the end of the last 18 holes.
In contrast to the past couple of weeks, the Elis were able to play in favorable weather conditions and on a course they have historically enjoyed.
“It was almost 80 degrees,” Bernstein said. “It was about 15 degrees warmer than in New Haven. On Sunday there was a bit more wind than on Saturday but it was much better than previous weeks when we had to deal with heavy wind and the cold.”
The Elis will get one last shot at the Crimson before Ivies, and it will be at Yale’s home course.
“I know our team is excited to take on Harvard and the rest of the field on our own turf this weekend, and we are definitely charged up for the Ivy League Championship,” Davenport said. “I’m confident our team will not be outworked in the next two weeks, because I speak for all of us when I say we are very hungry for an Ivy title this year.”
The Bulldogs will next tee off against the Crimson on Saturday, April 19, at the Yale Golf Course in the Yale Spring invitational.