The last two tournaments for the women's golf team were marked by both success and frustration — the team placed second at the Richmond Invitational Oct. 10 and 11, and stayed in contention for the win for the majority of the tournament. But the team's string of successes, dating back to a second-place finish at the Princeton Invitational Sept. 24 and 25, ended in tough conditions this past weekend at the Harvard Invitational.
The team made a strong showing at the 54-hole Richmond Invitational, shooting 917 for the weekend and coming close to forcing a team playoff.
"We had a great start," said Head Coach Danielle Griffiths. "True team effort for second place — thought we might have been tied for the win."
Stephanie Hsieh '15 turned in a standout performance for Bruno, earning medalist honors for the tournament after birdieing the first hole of an individual playoff to give her the lowest overall score of the weekend, a dazzling one-under-par 215.
"It was definitely crazy," Hsieh said. "I hadn't played that well in my life. Tried to focus on one shot at a time and not focus on future shots — that's when you trip up."
In her first year on the team, Hsieh has already proven herself a contender in every tournament.
"(Hsieh) made our team better in just one season," Griffiths said. "We're very happy that she's here and leading us in our scores."
Hsieh's strong play was complemented by the impressive play of the team's upperclassmen. Heather Arison '12 placed 12th individually with a 231 and Captain Megan Tuohy's '12 233 earned 18th. Carly Arison '12 carded a 239, and Michelle Chen '15 shot 246. Cassandra Carothers '15, who played as an individual and whose score did not count toward the team's score, placed eighth individually with a 229 in her season debut.
"It was (Carothers') first tournament, and she had a top-10 finish," Griffiths said. "It was a great team showing."
But the Harvard Invitational was a different story, as the team faced a talented field amid unfavorable conditions.
"The wind was blowing hard and the greens were tough," Griffiths said. "Hardly anyone broke 80. Harvard shot 331 (Sunday) — they haven't shot that in almost five years."
The 36-hole tournament proved to be the toughest of the fall thus far. The team's 658 for the weekend left them a sixth place finish for the tournament.
"The conditions were rough," Tuohy said. "There was no place to miss. We had to be very accurate with our shots."
Though Tuohy found the course difficult, she led the team for the weekend, shooting 158 and placing seventh individually.
"She's a great leader on and off the golf course," Griffiths said. "She's one of the best players in the Ivy League, and (Hsieh) is up there as well."
Hsieh had the team's next best score of 164, followed by Heather Arison at 167 and Carly Arison at 173.
The squad will finish its season at the Lehigh Invitational Oct. 22 and 23, competing in a field absent of Ivy League competition. "I see (Hsieh) and (Tuohy) leading us at this tournament," Griffiths said. "You know they're going to play well, and it makes the other girls on our team more consistent as well."
Tuohy said she believes the team is well prepared for the tournament and will look to end the season on a high note.
"We hope we can use this weekend to learn and improve, and look forward to a course that is well-suited to our team," she said.