by Patrick Gustavson
Following the four-month break, Central Connecticut’s men’s and women’s golf team returned to action placing seventh out of 1r participating schools at the Lonnie Barton Invitational in Daytona Beach, Florida.
The invitational started March 5 and finished with the Blue Devils scoring a two-day total of 623 shots (47 shots over the 72 par).
On day one, the team’s four golfers combined to shoot a respectable 13 over par, sitting at fifth place overall. They were led by senior Anthony Sebastianelli, who shot a strong 74, tied for twelfth best of all individuals.
However, things did not go as smoothly for the Blue Devils on the second day of the tournament. They shot a less-impressive 32 over par, falling to seventh on the leaderboard. But the Blue Devils were not the only team to face struggles. All but one school shot at least 17 over on the day, with the exception of Bethune-Cookman, who went on to win the tournament.
However, there was one golfer that did not fall victim to the conditions. Freshman Nick Piersall was the only Blue Devil to improve his score on the second day, jumping from an 80 to a solid 75.
Sebastianelli once again led the way for the team, shooting a five-over 77. His two-day total of 151 was good enough for eleventh overall in the tournament.
Piersall, along with freshman Thomas Downing, both finished the event 11 shots over par, contributing to the team’s overall score.
As for the Blue Devils that participated solely as individuals, sophomore Arthur Ouimet also finished at 11 over-par alongside his teammate’s Piersall and Downing. However, Ouimet’s score did not count towards the school’s total score.
Out of the eight teams present from the Northeast Conference, CCSU finished in fifth place. Bryant led the way, finishing 34 shots over par (besting Central by 13 shots), good enough for third overall in the tournament. This result is less than promising, considering the Blue Devils were picked second in the NEC preseason poll.
As for the women’s team, they were not as successful, finishing in tenth place out of 12 participating schools. Senior Tara Whelan led the way for the Blue Devils, shooting an 83 and 86 in the two rounds. She finished the tournament in 37th place.
Freshman Alexa Brown followed closely behind, shooting a combined 171 for the tournament, finishing 41st.
Freshmen Olivia Gardenhour and Meghan McLean shot 172 and 175, respectively, contributing towards the team’s combined score of 671, finishing 95 shots over par.
Fellow NEC school Fairleigh Dickinson won the tournament on the women’s side with an impressive 42 shots over par, leading the field after both days of competition.
The men’s team will be back in action on March 31 and April 1 in Galloway, NJ at the Checkmate Match Play Challenge. As for the women’s team, they will take on the Kingsmill Invitational in Williamsburg, Va. on March 19 and 20.