After four straight bogeys on his previous four holes, William Davenport ’15 approached the tee box on the 240-yard par-three 13th hole of the Yale golf course on Sunday. Davenport’s first shot sailed directly onto the green, and he two-putted for par to break the string of bogeys. He carried this momentum through the rest of his round and played the final six holes one under par.
From that point on, the men’s golf team left no doubt about its ability to defend its home course and home championship. After finishing Saturday’s competition in third place, the Eli men stormed back on Sunday to win the two-day Macdonald Cup for the second straight year with a final team score of 564.
“It doesn’t get better than a come-from-behind victory on Sunday in golf,” men’s team head coach Colin Sheehan said.
Sheehan said Davenport’s three-under-par 67 round on Saturday represented his lowest score as a college golfer, while captain Bradley Kushner ’13 shot an even-par 70 in his first round. Saturday’s round of 282 left the Bulldogs three strokes off the pace set by Central Connecticut.
But the Bulldogs did not allow themselves to be discouraged by their position after the first round.
“Three back in golf is really actually nothing,” Kushner said. “I wasn’t too worried that we were three back.”
Kushner also noted that the course played the easiest that he had ever seen it play on Saturday due to its layout and the weather before the tournament. But he said he knew that the course would be extended for the tournament’s final day on Sunday.
This served as an advantage to the Elis, who practice on the course at its most difficult.
While the change in course layout on Sunday seemed to bother most teams in the tournament, the Bulldogs posted the same score on Sunday as they had on the shorter course on Saturday. Kushner finished the round a stroke under par, while Sam Bernstein ’14, Joe Willis ’16 and Davenport scored rounds of even par, one over par and two over par, respectively.
As the men’s team competed at home, the women’s team traveled to Pennsylvania State University to compete at the Nittany Lion Invitational.
Despite posting several solid individual rounds over the three days, the Elis ultimately ended in ninth-place with a score of 907 among a strong field of 17 teams. After Friday’s first round, the Bulldogs found themselves in twelfth place on the leaderboard with a score of 312.
“As a team I don’t think we did very well the first day,” Shreya Ghei ’15 said.
But the team showed huge improvement the next day, Ghei remarked, posting a score of 298 on Saturday, 14 strokes better than its Friday round. The team continued itsimproved play on Sunday, following up Saturday’s performance with a 297.
While the team worked on its short game in the interval between Friday and Saturday’s rounds, women’s team head coach Chawwadee Rompothong said that the team still could have scored lower.
“We didn’t take advantage of the par fives,” Rompothong said.
The women’s team will continue its season next weekend at the Lady Pirate Intercollegiate in North Carolina, while the men’s team will next compete on Oct. 13 at the Big Five in Pennsylvania.