Oct. 5, 2008
NEW HAVEN, Conn. - The Bulldogs continued their charge up the leaderboard Sunday to move up one more spot and finish second at the Macdonald Cup. They finished just eight shots behind the winners, Oklahoma (860), with a team score of 868. The Bulldogs marched into second after passing Sacred Heart (872) who stumbled on Sunday shooting a team round of 300, seven shots worse than the Bulldogs. Sacred Heart would end up finishing fourth, one shot behind Bryant (871), who took third.
"All weekend long I was tremendously impressed with the quality of shotmaking and scoring of the participants in the field," said Coach Colin Sheehan. With 54 holes in two days on a challenging course, including a rain delay Sunday morning, the Macdonald Cup was indeed the mental and physical challenge it was intended to be. Whomever was going to win, they had to earn it."
Earn it they did. But, scores across the board were higher on Sunday, partially due to the rain delay early in the round, but mostly due to the challenge of the course.
"The course was a little different today, which resulted in the higher scores," said Moore. "There were tougher pin locations, and the rain definitely was a factor. The course played a lot longer. I think it worked in our favor, and helped us move up the leaderboard."
Moore led the Bulldogs up that leaderboard with a round of 72 (+2) on Sunday and a final tournament score of 212 (+2). He shot rounds of 72 (+2) and 68 (-2) on Saturday to finish alone in third place, four shots behind the winner and two behind second place. Right behind more was sophomore Thomas Mccarthy, who finished tied for fifth with a tournament score of 214 (+4) and a round of 73 (+3) on Sunday. McCarthy had matched Moore with a round of 68 (-2) Saturday afternoon.
"It's during the second round of a 36-hole day when teams either sink or swim," said Sheehan. "As a result, I was very proud that four of the players improved in the afternoon, with Colby and Tom each shooting 68. Breaking par on that course is a special achievement."
Sophomore Michael Fader finished eleventh in his debut home tournament. He shot a tournament score of 218 (+8) and a round of 73 (+3) on Sunday. Yale's other two players junior Ben Wescoe and senior Taylor Hakes finished tied for 22nd and 44th, respectively. Wescoe and Hakes both started out the tournament with rounds of 77, but improved in the afternoon. Wescoe finished with a tournament score of 224 (+14) and a round of 75 (+5) on Sunday. Hakes shot 229 (+19) for the tournament and 78 (+8) on Sunday.
Yale's second team managed to remain where they finished off Saturday, beating both Fordham and Holy Cross to earn 13th place. The team shot their highest round of the weekend, but managed to hold off a strong day from Fordham. The Bulldogs shot a team round of 326 and a tournament score of 941. Fordham shot 942 and Holy Cross 978. Yale's second team was led by junior Seve Gonzales and freshman Jeffrey Cartin Hatten, who finished tied for 38th with a tournament score of 228 (+18). Sophomore Brandon Marick finished in 69th with a tournament score of 242. Freshman Zachary Plutzik finished tied for 71st and senior Thomas Ginakakis tied for 74th. They shot rounds of 248 and 251, respectively.
The tournament was won by Jason Thresher of Bryant. He was the only player to finish the tough Course at Yale in under-par. He shot rounds of 71 (+1), 68 (-2) and 69 (-1) to finish with a tournament score 208 (-2). He was trailed by Liam Logan of Oklahoma, who shot even-par for the tournament (210). He shot rounds of 73 (+3), 67 (-3) and 70 (E). Riley Pumphrey of Oklahoma shot the low round of the tournament Saturday morning with a round of 65 (-5). He would end up in fifth place though after shooting rounds of 75 (+5) and 74 (+4) to finish out the tournament.
"Having the University of Oklahoma in the field forced us to elevate our games," said Sheehan. "And while we responded by playing some of the finest team golf in years, we tip our caps to the Sooners. They managed to quickly master a course that benefits those with local knowledge."
Moore echoed that sentiment, when looking back at the team's performance the last two years at the Macdonald Cup.
"We've taken on two top 50 teams the last two years at this tournament, TCU last year and Oklahoma this year," said Moore. "It came down to the wire in both cases. We hung into the end. This is the best team I have ever been on and this tournament will give us a lot of momentum going into our last two tournaments of the fall."
The Bulldogs will return to action next week at the ECAC Championships. The tournament will take place on Saturday, Oct. 11 and Sunday, Oct. 12.
Report filed by Charles Moore '10, Yale Sports Publicity