Golf closes out fall season with seventh place finish at Lehigh Invitational

Freshman+Sean+Saw+tied+for+23rd+at+eight+over+par+at+the+Lehigh+Invitational%2C+hosted+at+the+Saucon+Valley+Country+Club.+The+Leopards+placed+7th+overall+out+of+14+teams.+%28Photo+courtesy+of+Athletic+Commmunications%29

Freshman Sean Saw tied for 23rd at eight over par at the Lehigh Invitational, hosted at the Saucon Valley Country Club. The Leopards placed 7th overall out of 14 teams. (Photo courtesy of Athletic Commmunications)

Charlie Berman, Staff Writer

The Lafayette golf team placed seven out of 14 teams at the Saucon Valley Country Club for the Lehigh Invitational this past weekend. The Leopards started off strong on day one in fifth place, slowing down on the second day turning in the ninth-best team scorecard at the end of the day. 

The team was led by senior Kazuki Osawa, who shot two over par on Friday and followed up with a score of 76 on Saturday, finishing tied for 14th out of 77 golfers at six over for the tournament. Just behind him finished junior Martin Vanhaelst and first-year Sean Saw who both shot 78s on the second day, putting them in a tie for 23rd at eight over par.

The team as a whole didn’t do as well as we would have liked,” Saw said. “For me, it was a fun challenge and another good learning experience to take into the spring. This fall season had some strong finishes that we are hoping to make a regular occurrence in the spring.”

The Lehigh Invitational was the first time in two tournaments that the Leopards did not place on the podium, but the team remained consistent and played well in tough frigid and rainy conditions. The Leopards played without senior leader and Patriot League Golfer of the Week recipient Ryan Tall for the first time all season, which resulted in them increasingly reliant on the first-years. 

Rounding out the top six for the Leopards, first-year Ray Dennehy finished 36th at a collective +13 after an impressive second round of 76, in which he improved his score by nine. His classmate Michael Walsh turned in 81s on both days to finish tied for 59th  at +18. Finally, senior Drew Steiner and first-year Michael Bell finished tied for 66th shooting 21 over.

I think the team has done well this year after a slow start,” Saw said. “With how we played in Georgia and some of our other strong finishes, we definitely are trending up as a team. Our spring season is gonna go very well with the preparation we’re gonna take in the off-season.”

The fall golf season ended abruptly on Tuesday, as the Presidents’ Cup between Lafayette and Lehigh was postponed until the spring due to weather and course conditions. After a 2019 victory, the Leopards lost the cup last year due to a second day surge in match play from the Mountain Hawks. The Maroon and White will start early on winter workouts and training, and look to return this spring to avenge last years’ heartbreaking loss.