Harvard Women's Golf Finishes 4th at Nittany Lion Invitational

Harvard Women's Golf Finishes 4th at Nittany Lion Invitational

By Kevin Rhoads

The Harvard women's third tournament of the fall took them to State College, Pennsylvania and Penn State University.  This is a new tournament for the Crimson, and despite the long drive, it was a great tournament in which to participate.  Though not the national-caliber field of the previous week, it was a strong Northeast field.  The golf course , originally built in the late 60's and renovated in 2006, is a good classic design.

Heavy rains made the drive to Happy Valley exciting, and indirectly affected play.  The course received 3-5 inches of rain on Thursday and into Friday, so its 6,242 yards played long from tee to green.  Rain was also forecast for both Saturday and Sunday, but in the end the rains held off.  Temperatures started in the 40's each morning, but the rounds were played in the upper 50's and low 60's. 

In an effort to strengthen Harvard's schedule, they are playing more 54 hole events this year.  Like at Princeton, on Saturday the teams played 36 holes starting in shotgun format.  The 36 hole-days are physically and mentally challenging, but also an opportunity to play a good number of holes and get into a rhythm.  Harvard displayed signs of both.  As a team the Crimson got off to an average start.  Bonnie Hu continued her strong play, again pacing the Crimson with a 74.  Katie Sylvan had her low round of the season thus far, shooting 76.  Christine Cho managed 79.  Mia Kabasakalis and Jane Lee rounded out the scoring with a pair of 80's.  Harvard's 309 total left them in 7th place out of 17 teams; 14 shots behind first-place Penn State.

Harvard continued their trend of playing a strong second-round.  Hu again had a great ball striking round, shooting 73.  For the day, she averaged 14+ greens in regulation for each of her two rounds.  Either round could have been well under par.  She burned the edges on many putts, but just couldn't get many to fall.  Kabasakalis also shot a great 73 – her low round for the year.  Cho was solid again, shooting 75, and Lee shot 76.  That gave the Crimson a 297 total.  It was their second-lowest round of the year, and was the second lowest team total of the round.  They made up some ground on the field, finishing tied for fourth after 36 holes.  They were only 6 shots behind the ! two first place teams: host Penn State and Western Michigan. 

The third round provided an opportunity to make a run at a the title.  The day started quite cold, and rain was forecast.  It turned out to be a bit windy with tougher pin positions, but the rain stayed away the entire round.  As has been the pattern so far this year, the Crimson could not get off to a fast start.  Instead, most had to steady themselves or try to make up ground after the first couple of holes.  Hu had  75 and Cho 76.  Kabasakalis had 77, and Sylvan 79.  That gave Harvard 307.  It was not a bad round for the day, but it didn't allow them to make up any ground on the first place team.  Harvard finished tied for fourth, with Penn State winning.  The Crimson were 12 shots behind Penn State, three shots behind Western Michigan and one shot behind Rollins.  Harvard was the low Ivy school by one shot over Yale, and by 29 shots overy Columbia.

The team has made some progress in the last couple of weeks.  Their motivation and work ethic are high.  They are organized with what they are working on, and are making progress with their skill sets and confidence level.  They just need to keep refining those skills throughout the remaining two weeks of the fall season, and also through the winter and into the spring. 

The remaining fall tournament is going to be another new event.  The inagural Harvard Invitational will be played October 16 and 17 at The International in Bolton, Massachusetts.  It will be a 36 hole event – 18 each day starting at 10am with all Ivy League teams participating.  Spectators are welcome and the team would appreciate your support if you are in the area.  If you have questions regarding the event, feel free to contact Coach Kevin Rhoads at krhoads@fas.harvard.edu.    

Par:        72   72   72               Daily Low Round
Yardage:  6246 6246 6246           
 Daily Leader     Both
Fin Team                     Scores
1 Penn State Univ.         295  305  301    901   +37
2 Western Michigan U.      299  301  310    910   +46
3 Rollins                  305  299  308    912   +48
T  4
Harvard University       309  297  307    913   +49
T  4 Wm. & Mary, Coll. of     305  301  307    913   +49
Yale University          299  310  305    914   +50
7 Longwood University      316  307  310    933   +69
T  8 Akron, U. of             308  315  313    936   +72
T  8
Charleston, Coll. of     318  308  310    936   +72
10 Bucknell University      321  296  320    937   +73
11 Ohio University          315  308  318    941   +77
Columbia University      315  315  312    942   +78
13 Lehigh University        312  309  323    944   +8
14 Ball State Univ.         315  314  318    947   +83
15 Richmond, U. of          320  311  320    951   +87
16 Rutgers University       327  315  319    961   +97
17 Monmouth University      335  326  337    998  +134

  Fin  Name                  School      Scores
Bonnie Hu             Harvard      74   73   75    222    +6
T 21 
Christine Cho         Harvard      79   75   76    230   +14
T 21 
Mia Kabasakalis       Harvard      80   73   77    230   +14
T 37 
Katie Sylvan          Harvard      76   80   79    235   +19
T 57 
Jane Lee              Harvard      80   76   83    239   +23