Men’s Golf weekend at Yale

Hugh Straine, Contributing Writer

Men’s Golf traveled to Yale University for the MacDonald Cup this weekend, going up against elite competition: Minnesota, Harvard, Richmond, Michigan, St. John’s, Fairfield, University of Pennsylvania, Hartford and Fordham.

Bucknell finished ninth out of eleven teams for the weekend, finishing at +45, placing ahead of Hartford and Fordham.

Jackson Bussell ’23 finished as the low Bison for the tournament, carding a twelth place finish with a final score of even par for the event. He finished nine strokes behind the winner from St. John’s, who ended his weekend at -9. 

Minnesota took home the team crown, finishing at +2 as a team after the three round event, two strokes ahead of Harvard, who took second place at +4. The Gophers and Crimson controlled the field throughout the weekend, with Yale as the third place finisher coming in six strokes behind at +10.

Bussell had a consistent weekend with his round splits at 69, 72 and 69. Bussell came out of the gates hot with straight five first round birdies.

“I took advantage of some of the easier holes out there. Hit some good iron and wedge shots that led to close birdie chances and it just so happened consecutively,” he said. Bussell continued his solid play and earned a top-15 finish because of it.

The next best score the Bison produced was from Andres Barraza ’26 who landed a T30 finish at +8. Blake Wisdom ’23 earned himself a T45 place at +12 coming off a spectacular previous weekend at the Cornell/Temple Invitational.

Bucknell struggled specifically on par 4’s and par 5’s this weekend, coming ninth in average scoring on the par 4’s (4.26) and par 5’s (5.08). The team had a hard time taking opportunities for birdies, and made lots of mistakes leading to some high numbers.

Bussell spoke on the team.

“I think that our team just needs to be more avoidant of the big numbers, if you subtract our double bogeys or worse then we would finish a lot higher. Also our team collectively is not great at putting when looking back at our stats, and I believe the condition of the greens we practice on could be part of the reason for that problem,” Bussell said. 

Although the team has not been able to attack opportunities so far this season, plenty of individual stellar performances through the first few weekends gives the men’s team the confidence they need to continue to improve. They are off this weekend, but host the Bucknell Invitational in Lewisburg the following week.

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