Coming off of a disappointing fourth-place finish at the Inverness Collegiate, Virginia men’s golf ventured up to Maidstone Golf Club in East Hampton, N.Y. Monday and Tuesday for the Hamptons Intercollegiate and cruised to a win. Meanwhile, after earning a third-place finish at the Mercedes-Benz Intercollegiate, Virginia women’s golf traveled to Highland Park, Ill., for the Windy City Collegiate Classic where they struggled to a seventh-place finish.
The field included stalwart programs such as Ohio State and Oregon State, as well as some Ivy League competition in Yale, Princeton and Penn.
From the 7:45 a.m. start Monday morning to the conclusion of Tuesday’s final round, the Cavaliers dominated in nearly every facet of the game. Virginia shot a three-over 868 after 54 holes, winning in convincing fashion by 35 strokes.
Virginia started the competition by shooting a 3-under 285 to jump out to an early lead. Only Yale was within 10 strokes of the lead going into the second round Monday, as they shot a solid one-over 289. The Cavaliers followed up their hot start with a second-round 292, bringing them to a score of one-over for the tournament and extending their lead over second-place Yale to 13 strokes.
Heading into Tuesday, freshman Ben James was atop the individual leaderboard with a two-under 142. He was closely followed by senior Pietro Bovari and sophomore Deven Patel, with a one-under 143 and a two-over 146, respectively. These three Virginia players aimed to keep their hold on the individual podium heading into the final day of play.
With the large lead that Virginia held over the other teams in the field, it was inevitable that the Cavaliers would be successful statistically. The Cavaliers led the field in par-three, par-four and par-five scoring over the course of the tournament. They also displayed remarkable consistency, leading the field in both pars and birdies.
On Tuesday, the Cavaliers once again had a great showing with a three-over 291. Ben James continued his fantastic play with a three-under 69, while Pietro Bovari dropped to fifth place with a six-over 78. James took home his second individual title of his freshman year and the Cavaliers took home their second title of the young season.
Things did not fare as well for the women’s team this week, though. The Cavaliers got off to a rough start on Monday, and they couldn’t recover fully for the rest of the tournament. Virginia finished tied for seventh with a score of 34-over 898 in a loaded field with programs such as USC, Texas and Arizona State.
The Cavaliers started their tournament off with a 14-over 302, putting them in ninth place after the first 18 holes of play. They followed up with an 11-over 299 that afternoon, helping them jump to seventh place going into Tuesday. Despite the poor team performance, junior Jennifer Cleary performed well, holding a top-12 spot on the individual leaderboard with a four-over 148 after the first two rounds of play.
On Tuesday, the Cavaliers shot their best round of the tournament with a score of nine-over 297. Although the team ended on a high note, their performance was not enough to help them climb the leaderboard, as they remained in seventh place for the tournament.
Despite the disappointing performance, Virginia performed well on par-threes and par-fours, ranking fourth in the field for each category. They faltered when faced with par fives, however, as they averaged 5.10 strokes per par 5 and a combined score of six-over on all par fives.
Looking forward, both teams will travel to their next events of the season Oct. 21. The men will compete at the Golf Club of Georgia Invitational in Alpharetta, Ga., while the women travel to Stanford, Calif., for the Stanford Intercollegiate.