After an underwhelming performance at the Nittany Lion Invitational last weekend, the Yale women’s golf team failed to improve significantly at the Princeton Invitational this weekend, finishing 10th out of the 12 teams.
Hosted at the Springdale Golf Club, the tournament consisted of two rounds totalling 144 holes over two days. Following the first day of competition, the Bulldogs carded a 31-over 319, placing them 12th in the standings. However, the team heroically climbed two spots in the final round after finishing with a composite score of 622. Yale claimed victory over both Dartmouth and Youngstown State — teams the Bulldogs had fallen to just last week. Penn State continued its invitational success streak this season by securing a undisputed win on Princeton’s home turf.
This invitational featured many members of the Ivy League, including Columbia, Dartmouth, Harvard, Penn and Princeton. Thus, this event could serve as a preview to Yale’s main competition for the championship season.
“I think we’re stacking up well against the other Ivies, especially given our trend of playing better throughout the season,” captain Julie Luo ’19 said. “I think this weekend at Yale will give us even more momentum to work hard in the off season.”
In contrast to her disappointing performance last weekend in Pennsylvania, Luo earned a total of 159 (+15), good enough for 53rd overall. Her effort to retain a positive mentality allowed her to play more consistently.
Sophomores Lucy Liu ’21 and Gabrielle DeSombre ’21 carded final scores of 164 (+20) and 174 (+30) respectively, bringing up the rear of the Yale stat sheet. DeSombre began with a 12-over 84, in the first round but managed to bounce back by eventually swinging an eight-over 80. Recording an 85 and slipping to an 89 the following day, Liu also struggled to produce positive results.
First years Ami Gianchandani ’22 and Coco Chai ’22 earned final scores of a three-under 141, and 14-over 158, once again topping the stat sheet for the Elis, a pattern that has persisted with every invitational. Chai began the tournament at Princeton with a solid 80, but she was able to shave a couple strokes the next day by carding a 78. Chai remains eager to compete in her first championship season next spring.
“To prepare for the spring season, each of us will keep working on our strengths and weaknesses,” Chai said. “I’m most excited about golf in the spring because playing competitively is the best way to strengthen our game.”
Gianchandani led the team in scoring for both rounds with a 74 and an eye-popping 67, culminating in a performance rivaling those of 2018 Ivy League Player of the Year and former captain Jennifer Peng ’18. Once again, Gianchandani topped all other competitors, claiming first place overall.
A mere three weeks into the season, Gianchandani has already recorded two individual championship victories and a solid 15th place finish. Despite competing against some of the best women golfers in the country, Gianchandani seeks to continue her successes down the road.
“I attribute my success mostly to the practice and the commitment of everyone on the team,” Gianchandani said. “We have specific goals in practice that help prepare us for each week that are a big factor in developing confidence going into a tournament.”
With three underwhelming performances under their belt thus far, the Bulldogs will be searching to improve their 2018–19 season record with a solid finish at the Yale Invitational. Many of the members believe playing at The Course at Yale will provide a aura of confidence and a chance for redemption.
“I know the team and I are very excited to finish our season at home,” Gianchandani said. “We are all looking forward to playing on our home course.”
The team will compete next weekend at the Yale Invitational in New Haven from Oct. 5-7.
Ethan Williams | firstname.lastname@example.org