Navy Women's Golf to Open Fall Season Saturday
Sep 4, 2013
ANNAPOLIS, Md. - The Navy women's golf team will begin its fall schedule in Lewisburg, Pa. at the Lady Bison Classic at the Bucknell Golf Club this Saturday and Sunday. The Lady Bison Classic will consist of three rounds (two rounds Saturday and one Sunday) and will have 17 competing teams at the par-70 course. Live scoring will be available. Navy will compete in four tournaments this fall in preparation of its spring championship season.
"We are really excited to begin our fall season," head coach Nadia Ste-Marie said. "We have picked up right where we left off last spring and we will continue to improve. We are moving forward and we are establishing a program that is heading in the right direction."
Ste-Marie will lead Navy into its second year as a varsity program in 2013-14. Director of Athletics Chet Gladchuk elevated the program from club status to varsity in November of 2012 and the program played its first competition in the spring of 2013. This will be Navy's first opportunity to play a fall schedule as a Division I program.
"We are still in a bit of transition phase," said Ste-Marie. "But we have a bunch of great girls and we are creating a program that will be attractive for girls to come to the Naval Academy and play golf for us."
Navy competed in seven events last spring, with the culmination being the 2013 Patriot League Tournament. Navy placed third out of four teams, finishing ahead of Holy Cross and behind champion Lehigh and second-place Bucknell. Another highlight from year one included a dual win over Mount St. Mary's on Navy's home course in March.
Ste-Marie returns four players from last spring's roster, including sophomore Renata Bucher (Colorado Springs, Colo.). Bucher posted a team-best scoring average of 84.5 last spring. She was Navy's low scorer in six of seven events. Senior team captain Grace Dalton (Malvern, Pa.) also returns after shooting a 93.9 average round.
Due to Navy's formal announcement of the program's elevation coming in the middle of the previous academic year, Ste-Marie's first full recruiting class will not arrive on campus until the fall of 2014. However, Ste-Marie was able to add a pair of freshmen in Marci Browning (Canal Winchester, Ohio) and Katie Ryall (Colorado Springs, Colo.) who will compete immediately this fall.
Browning and Ryall will join returners Bucher, Dalton and sophomore Melia Lagat (Bremerton, Wash.) as Navy's five players who will be traveling to the season opening Lady Bison Classic this weekend. The best four scores from each round will count toward the team total.
Navy will get a chance to compete against fellow Patriot League schools Bucknell and Lehigh, as well as conference newcomer Boston University, at the Lady Bison Classic.
The program will host the Navy Chesapeake Bay Invitational at the Naval Academy Golf Club from September 22-23. Additional teams competing at the Chesapeake Bay Invite will be Butler, Delaware State, Fairleigh Dickinson, St. Francis Brooklyn, Towson and Wagner.
Navy will compete in two tournaments in October, beginning with the Rutgers Invitational from October 14-15. Bucknell and Lehigh will also be competing at Rutgers.
Navy, one of over 250 Division I women's golf programs, will conclude its fall schedule at the Lehigh Invitational from October 27-28 at the Saucon Valley Country Club, which will be the site of the 2014 Patriot League Championship in April.