Men’s Golf Improves Every Round

By MIGUEL ESPINOSA

The men’s golf team travelled south down Route 7 last weekend for the Williams Fall Invitational, hosted by NESCAC rival, Williams College. 

The tournament took place at the scenic Taconic Golf Club, a par-71 course located adjacent to Williams’ campus. With the temperature hovering around the low sixties, the weather was ideal for a late September match. 

A narrative was also in play for the Panthers. The Ephs had won our very own Duke Nelson Invitational at the Ralph Myhre Golf Course the weekend before, so the team was poised to exact revenge. Perhaps the Panthers would make a comeback similar to Tiger Woods’ that weekend, who earned his first PGA Tour Victory in five years.

Middlebury, unfortunately, would finish seventh out of the 20 teams that competed. Williams would continue its hot streak, placing first in its own tournament. Following Williams were Husson University and Trinity College, who fell second and third, respectively.

Williams scored 588 over the course of two rounds, which was 20 over par. Husson was 37 shots behind, scoring a total of 605, while Trinity was two points back and hit 607. Middlebury, a combined 50 shots over par for the weekend, landed a total of 618.

After the first round on Saturday, the Panthers shot 313 and were positioned ninth. Their score improved on Sunday, when they hit 305 and managed to finish seventh overall. The trend for the men’s golf team this year has been improvement from the first to second round; in the Ralph Myhre Tournament last weekend, its score decreased on the second day.

Leading the Panthers’ efforts were captain Reid Buzby ’19 and David Packer ’20. At 153, both men tied for 16th place with regards to individual scores.

“I felt that my ability to keep the ball in play off the tee, allowing me to try to hit my second shot close to the pin, was the strongest part of my game,” said Packer. “Rarely did I find myself having to punch out from behind a tree.”

Phin Choukas ’22 tied for 32nd at 156, and Jordan Bessalel ’21, just a shot behind Choukas, was tied for 37th at 157. Chris Thompson ’22, was tied for 65th at 163.

The Williams team had three golfers place individually in the top ten, which unsurprisingly explained their success. Their best player, Sam Goldenring, was two shots below par at 140, and finished first individually.

The Panthers will expect more opportunities to compete against the Ephs on Sept. 29 and 30, when they travel to Middlefield, Connecticut for the NESCAC Championship Qualifier.

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