October 23, 2008

Bulldogs Head to North Carolina for Ross Resort Invitational

Oct. 23, 2008

SOUTHERN PINES, N.C. - The Yale women's golf team will head to North Carolina this Monday to compete in the Ross Resort Invitational hosted by Rollins. The tournament will be contested at Pine Needles Golf Club. It will take place over two days, with 36 holes on Monday and 18 on Tuesday. The Bulldogs are no stranger to this tournament, having played in it for a number of years.

The tournament will be the smallest one in terms of schools in which the Bulldogs have competed. The eight teams competing will be No. 97 Augusta State, Bucknell, No. 83 Illinois State, Memphis, Methodist, Rollins, Western Michigan and Yale.

This week the Bulldogs will send senior captain Natasha Spackey, sophomore Alyssa Roland, sophomore Cassie Boles, sophomore Harriet Owers-Bradley and freshman Callie Kemmer to compete. Yale will also send three individuals. Freshman Lily Boettcher, senior Erica Im and junior Taylor Lee will all get the opportunity to challenge the Pine Needles Golf Course.

The Bulldogs are coming off a strong victory in their last tournament. Yale won the LPGA Xavier Invitational by one shot, ahead of Florida Atlantic. It was a tournament in which no Bulldogs broke the top five individually. As Boles said after the tournament, "We never really had stellar rounds as a team, but we were able to come in first with no one in the top five. We know we have major room for improvement." Yale shot a 902, with all five players contributing at least one score to the team total.

The Pine Needles Golf Club was the site of the 1996 and 2008 US Women's Open. It was designed by Donald Ross and is routinely ranked in the top two or three golf courses in North Carolina. Ross is best known for his design of Pinehurst No. 2 and Oak Hills. According to Kendra Graham, the director of women's competitions for the USGA, "Pine Needles is a classic. It's such a memorable golf course. You need every club in your bag and you remember every hole after you play it one time. The holes feel like they've been there forever."

Last year, the tournament was won by Rollins. Rollins comes into the tournament this year ranked No. 9 among Division II schools according to golfstat.com. Yale tied for sixth with Elon, shooting a tournament score of 961 (+97). Lindsay Hong '08 led Yale with a third-place finish, shooting 226 (+10). The returning players for Yale -- Owers-Bradley, Spackey, Roland and Boles -- finished 23rd, 41st, 51st and 67th, respectively. Yale finished fourth and third the two years previous.

"This will be a good test of golf and endurance and I believe we have the ingredients to win," said coach Chawwadee Rompothong. ""The team has been playing good golf and if we just keep our patience and composure, we can win. Everyone on the team has been on the edge of shooting really low scores and this will be a great weekend to take it deep."

The Bulldogs will tee off Monday morning.

Report filed by Charles Moore '10, Yale Sports Publicity

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