By: Joseph Siegel
The Sacred Heart women’s golf team achieved their second consecutive SHU Fall Classic title on Sept. 15.
The team recorded a score of 641, which was 15 strokes ahead of the second place team, United States Naval Academy, who finished with a score of 656. The team dominated the tournament with three of their players finishing in the Top Five and five finishing in the Top 10 of the leaderboard.
The Great River Golf Club where the Classic was held is the team’s home course, and the golfer’s years of experience playing there gave them an advantage.
“The tournament was a strong end to the season,” said junior Chelsea Sedlar. “With it being one of toughest courses we play on, we knew as a team we had to defend our home field no matter what hindrances were brought upon us.”
Sedlar was the Pioneers’ top finisher at +13. Her score of 78 in the final round was good enough to finish third overall.
“I believe the SHU Fall Classic went pretty well,” said senior Abigail Hood. “The course had some tough conditions, it was really windy and cold, but we hung in there as a team and left with a win.”
Hood finished with a score of 79 in round two and finished 19-over par to tie for fifth place.
“Having five seniors and two juniors who have experience is a huge advantage,” said Hood. “We’ve been playing together for three years. We all rely on one another and push each other equally.”
Sedlar was the first Sacred Heart women’s golfer to win the NEC Individual title in the 2015-2016 season. As a two-time first team All-NEC competitor, she won her first tournament of the year at the Hartford Invitational on Oct. 1.
“A personal goal for me this season is to achieve a lower stroke average,” said Sedlar. “Winning Player of the Year as a freshman and not earning that achievement as a sophomore is what motivates me for the upcoming season.”
The team won their first NEC championship last year.
“Going out there every tournament and giving everything I have to help my team win is the main goal,” said Sedlar. “We want to win our conference. Everyone on the team has to do their part, but we believe we have the talent and chemistry to do just that.”
The Pioneers know repeating as divisional champions isn’t an easy task. The team finished in eighth place at the Rutgers University Invitational on Sept. 10, and placed sixth at both the Navy Fall Invitational on Sept. 17 and Dartmouth University Invitational on Sept. 24.
With consecutive top three finishes at the Hartford Hawks Fall Invitational on Oct. 1 and the SHU Fall Classic, the positivity is building for the upcoming spring season.
“Every year I try to improve my scores from the year before,” said Hood. “I have done this my last 3 years, and would love to still improve my game in my senior year to help us win the conference again.”