With warm weather on the way, the Yale men’s and women’s golf teams are getting ready to tee off the 2020 spring season.

Last year, the Princeton men’s team narrowly edged the Columbia and Yale men’s teams, winning the Ivy League by one stroke. The Bulldogs finished third overall, two strokes behind the Tigers and one behind the Lions. After his performance in the Ivy League Championship, Teddy Zinsner ’21 qualified for the NCAAs. Now, as captain of the golf team, Zinsner is looking to build on his success.

“We definitely didn’t play our best as a team every week but we gave ourselves something to build on,” Zinsner said. “Our goal for the spring is obviously to win Ivy’s and compete in the NCAA Regionals but without looking ahead [we] just need to try and play our best every week and keep building up.”

During the 2019 fall season, the team’s results spoke for themselves. At the Doc Gimmler Invitational, the Bulldogs took second in a field of 14 teams. With both Zinsner and newcomer Gabriel Ruiz ’23 finishing in the top 10 individually, the performances were strong. The conclusion of the fall season set the Bulldogs on a promising course. At the Macdonald Cup and the Hamptons Invitational, the team finished in third and fifth place, respectively. In both events, the Bulldogs could have improved their overall placement with just a few strokes. The golfers will hope to shave off a stroke or two from their total tally in the new campaign.

The Yale women’s golf team had a strong showing in the fall. At the Dartmouth Invite in mid-September, the team placed third overall, with sophomore standout Ami Gianchandani ’22 finishing second individually. A few weeks later in Princeton, not only did the team place fourth of 13, but Gianchandani won the Invitational. After shooting a 67 on Saturday, she closed out her round with a 71, walking off the 18th three strokes ahead of her closest competitor. In addition to Gianchandani’s first place finish at the Yale Women’s Fall Intercollegiate, Amy Zhang ’23 and captain Beryl Wang ’20 scored well over the course of the weekend.

“Our main takeaway from last season is realizing that we are a strong team that can play against the best,” Wang said. Our low rounds in the fall have given us a boost of confidence as we head into spring season. We are all strong players individually and are working hard to put up solid rounds together. We grew a lot as a team last season and are eager to perform at our highest potential this spring.”

Building upon her success in the last few months of 2019, Gianchandani started the 2020 spring season with yet another first-place finish. She was the only golfer from the Ivy League to be mentioned on the Arnold Palmer Cup Rankings. Her continuous victories not only demonstrate her immense ability, but also help the team’s overall placement.

The combination of new and returning talent on the team will help propel the Bulldogs to success this season. During the FAU Winter Warmup Tournament at the start of February, the team placed third of 14, setting the tone for the next few months ahead.

“Our goal is simply to improve, from one tournament to the next,” Wang said. “We want to learn from every round and take something away that can help us improve the next time we tee it up. The end goal is to win [Ivy’s], but we are focused on mini goals that will eventually lead us there in April.”

The next women’s tournament is the Dr. Donnis Thompson Invitational in Kaneohe, Hawaii, starting on March 10. The men’s team will compete at the Schenkel Invitational in Statesboro, Georgia, the weekend of March 13.

Rehan Melwani |