April 24, 2009
NORTHFIELD, N.J. - The Bulldogs are positioned strongly after day one at the Ivy League Championships. Yale (292) is in third place, just one shot behind second-place Columbia (291) and seven shots behind the leaders Penn (285). It is a tight leaderboard from top to bottom, with Dartmouth (293) one shot behind Yale, and Princeton (294) just one shot behind Dartmouth. The Crimson of Harvard are in sixth at 296, and Cornell is just one shot behind them in seventh with 297. Brown rounds out the ancient eight in eighth with 302.
"We are feeling pretty good," said sophomore Thomas McCarthy. "We were playing really well throughout the entire day, until the last three holes. I think everyone dropped strokes on those last three. But the first day is all about setting yourself up in a good position and we did that."
The Bulldogs did give up seven shots total on the last three holes, but that did not take away from the strong round they put together. They were led by McCarthy who shot a 69 (-2), the second best round of the tournament, and is in a tie for second for his efforts. He is joined by Eric Salazar of Princeton and Pete Williamson of Dartmouth in second. Clark Granum of Columbia leads the tournament with his three-under round of 68.
McCarthy shot a near flawless round carding a bogey, a double-bogey and five birdies. He started the tournament on the tenth-tee and wasted no time getting to three-under with birdies on 11, 12 and 13. He gave a shot back right before the turn on 18, but reclaimed it with birdies on one and two. McCarthy would string together six pars before coming to the par-4 ninth. The ninth usually plays as a par-5, but at only 452 yards, it has been set as a par-4 for this tournament. McCarthy shot a double-bogey six and finished with a 69.
While McCarthy was the only Bulldog to break the top-ten, the rest of the team was not far behind. Junior Ben Wescoe finished at 73 (+2) and is in a tie for 12th with two other players. Wescoe also shot a relatively steady round with mostly pars, three birdies, three bogeys, and a double-bogey.
Sophomore Michael Fader and senior captain Colby Moore are just behind Wescoe in a tie for 21st. They both shot rounds of 75 (+4). Fader had four bogeys, a double bogey and birdie, while Moore's card featured five bogeys, a double bogey and two birdies.
Senior Taylor Hakes rounded out Yale's team in a tie for 26th with a round of 76 (+5). Hakes started on the back-nine and struggled with two double bogeys and three bogeys. But he managed to get it together for the front-nine, shooting one-under.
The Bulldogs are feeling confident that Penn may have peaked early in the tournament and that they can make a run at them tomorrow.
"Penn is really young," said McCarthy. "They have some really strong freshman like Taylor's brother, but I think they may have had their best round today. They are definitely a legit team, but it will be interesting to see if they can maintain that pace."
The Bulldogs will be paired with Penn and Columbia tomorrow beginning at 9:10 a.m.
"Tomorrow is moving day," said McCarthy. "We are all confident about our games and it does not really matter who we are paired with. We just have to go out and make a move tomorrow. It is the opposite of last year. Instead of leading, we are where Columbia was, and we are in attack mode."
Report filed by Charles Moore '10, Yale Sports Publicity