COURTESY OF MIDDLEBURY ATHLETIC COMMUNICATIONS
To begin their fall season, the women’s golf team will compete in the St. Lawrence Invitational at the Oliver D. Appleton Golf Course in Canton, N.Y. on September 7 and 8. There they will contend with Nescac rivals such as Hamilton, and also out of conference teams such as Vassar and New York University.
The team will attempt to make improvements from last season, when they had difficulty finishing above third place in any of the tournaments, only doing so with a second place finish at the St. Lawrence Invitational almost exactly a year ago. Led by the ever improving Chloe Levins ’20, this year’s team will look to crack their way to a top spot.
Senior captain and last year’s Nescac Player of the Year, Levins will be instrumental in the team’s push for a top spot.
“It’s important for me to enter this season without expectations,” she said. “I’m really looking forward to learning more about myself, building on the competitive base I’ve established over the past three years, and mentoring the four first-years on and off the course.”
Levins can be counted on to finish in the top 10 of any tournament she participates in, and is also coming off a victory in the Vermont State Women’s Golf Invitational. Under her leadership, the team is well positioned to see positive change.
Levins sees a great season in the making, which will be aided significantly by the size of the team.
“In past years, we’ve been limited by our size but with 10 experienced golfers on the roster this year, we’re looking forward to having a great season,” she said. “The depth of our team will be our biggest asset.”
Another potential key contributor on the team is classmate Blake Yaccino ’20. Yaccino participated in all but two events, finishing outside the top 10 only once and never surpassing 79 strokes. Yaccino was an All-Nescac Second Team honoree in 2016 and 2017, and finally became a First Team honoree last year with five top-four finishes.
Coach Bill Mandigo, who is entering his 12th season atop the program, should have a great deal of talent and depth on his roster and looks poised for a great season. With Levins and Yaccino at the reins, this year’s Panthers look to not only improve upon their performance last year, but to make a strong push for the NESCAC championship.