By Mia Kabasakalis '11
The women's golf team had a bittersweet spring season, truly bonding as a team but failing to bring home the Ivy Championship. Their first two spring showings, a match against UC Berkeley over Spring Break and another against Rollins the following week, revealed their stubborn winter rust. The team was beaten handily on both occasions.
While the Crimson women were determined to come back at the first tournament of the season at the Georgetown Hoya Invitational in Beallsville, MD, they were unfortunately faced with more disappointment. Playing in heavy winds during the grueling 36-hole opener, the women couldn't seem to find their footing. After the second day's round was canceled due to weather, Harvard finished in 8th place, tied with Columbia and behind the three leading Ivy teams, Yale, Princeton and Penn. The event was a wakeup call for the Crimson. The girls realized they had an incredible amount of ground to make up if they were going to recover from their first three events and be in contention to win the Ivy Championship that had eluded them the year before.
At the Brown Bear Invitational at Rhode Island Country Club the following weekend, it seemed as though the tide had turned and the Crimson's hard work was finally starting to pay off. After the first day, the ladies were in third place at 306 and Princeton led with an impressive 1-under par 287. The women were confident, which was evident in their play the next day. They shot 291, their lowest score of the year, to come in 2nd place overall. Although they finished behind Princeton, the team was energized after the weekend, realizing they were in a position to win the Ivy Championship.
Despite severe weather, the Crimson played solidly every round of the Championship, finding themselves only 3 back the first day and only 2 behind leader Yale after the second day. The third and final round was the expected dogfight that could afford no mistakes. Although everyone played well, with Freshman Bonnie Hue four under after the 14th hole, it wasn't enough. Yale took home their first Ivy Championship in five years.
Kabasakalis finished her career on a high note, placing 2nd overall at the Ivy Championship earning First Team All Ivy honors. Christine Cho '12 had a strong showing and earned Second Team All Ivy honors. In recognition of her strong play throughout the year and the best season scoring average in team history, Bonnie Hu was invited to the NCAA Regionals as an individual – a first for the Harvard Women's team.
Although the team was disappointed they didn't win this year, they took comfort in knowing they had given it their all. This year's growth throughout the year and performance down the stretch built a strong foundation for winning the Ivy championship in 2012.