The women’s golf team played in five tournaments this year, beginning with three tournaments in which they finished behind rival Bates. However, the Polar Bears progressed in the final two tournaments and finished ahead of Bates in both.

“One of our goals is to always beat Bates,” captain Maddy Fulton ’16 said. “We’re always pretty even in play, so it was a good accomplishment for us to be able to beat them in the last two.”
Captain Meredith Sullivan ’16 noted that one of the strengths of the team was that players were able to adjust their game between the first day and the second day of a tournament.

“A lot of our players were dropping shots at every course,” Sullivan said. “We were able to take what we saw from the first day and use it to score better on the second.”

One example of this came when Diya Chopra ’18, shot an 80 in the second round of the Middlebury Invitational on October 4 after shooting an 89 in the first round.

“Dropping nine strokes from the first to the second day is unbelievable,” Sullivan said. “The girls from Williams were shooting like 77-78 so that was an unbelievable score and was really great to see.”

Williams finished first in the tournament, with an overall two-day score of 642, while Bowdoin finished ninth of 12 teams with a score of 778. However, Chopra’s nine-shot drop proved to be essential, as Bowdoin finished ahead of Bates by only seven strokes.

According to Sullivan, hitting a greater percentage of fairways on the drive also contributed to the team’s late-season improvement.

“We definitely got a lot more consistent off the tees,” Sullivan said. “During the beginning of the year, it was kind of a toss-up on tee shots, but towards the end, I know all of us were able to consistently hit a first shot that put us in a position to play a much stronger hole.”

One of the team’s weaknesses was its lack of experience, as two of six members had not yet seen the courses where the team played its tournaments. The team consisted of four sophomores, Sullivan and Fulton. Chopra and Karen Chan ’18 were new to the team this season.

Still, Fulton and Sullivan see the Polar Bears improving next year after having at least this year of experience under their belts.

“We’re going to be an upward trending team in the future,” Fulton said. “We were pretty young this year and we’re hopefully getting some good new first years as well.”

“Next year, more of us will be familiar with the courses where we play tournaments,” Sullivan said. “These are really hard courses, so it will be a huge advantage next year to have a bunch of veterans coming back.”

Bowdoin’s final tournament of the year was the NESCAC Championship, the first ever in NESCAC women’s golf history. The tournament took place this past Sunday. Bowdoin shot a 384 the first day, which was good for fifth of sixth and eight strokes ahead of Bates. The next day, the Polar Bears and the Wildcats both shot a 380, giving Bowdoin the finish ahead of its rival.

“We beat Bates but lost to everyone else. Hopefully in the future as the team grows, we will be able to climb up the rankings,” Fulton said. “I had a great time this season. I’m sad to be leaving after this year. I learned a lot and had some great coaches and great teammates. It was a good year.”