The weekly student newspaper of Bucknell University

The Bucknellian

The weekly student newspaper of Bucknell University

The Bucknellian

The weekly student newspaper of Bucknell University

The Bucknellian

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Bison Women’s Golf comes in second at annual Bucknell Invitational

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Ben Popko / The Bucknellian

Bison Women’s Golf opened their season at the annual Bucknell Invitational tournament over the weekend. The Orange and Blue came in second place out of 10 teams behind the Boston University Terriers and set two team records while doing so.

In the first round of the Invitational, the Bison set a team record with a score of 292, the previous record having been 296. The score was led by Nicole Yun ’27, who scored a 1-71, Sophia Nogalo ’27, who scored 2- over 72, and Paige Richter ’26 who also scored 2 over 72. 

Of the top four scores in the first round, three were first-years, including Lila Smith ’27, who scored a 77. However, the following round is when Smith truly shined. She went 3-under and had three birdies at the par-3 fourth hole, as well as the six and 14, and ended the round with six pars to score a 2-under 68 – the first in team history. 

Smith emphasized the time the team put in prior to the tournament.

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“Our team tried to play as much as we could on the course. It was our home tournament so we wanted to have an advantage by knowing the course better than other teams,” Smith said. 

Following Smith, Nogalo, Richter and Cristina Canales ’24 all scored 77s, resulting in a team score of 299. This score, along with the 292, set another team record for the first time the team has started a tournament with two under-300 scores. 

Despite the incredible rounds, the Terriers scored 294 and 295, solidifying their lead heading into Sunday. Behind the Bison was Navy, Delaware State and Lehigh. The Bison B-team held seventh place with rounds of 314 and 318. 

Going into Sunday, the Bison’s coach, Lisa Francisco, gave them some advice on trusting their process. 

“The advice she gave us [was] to just play our game and try not to force anything. A lot of times it’s easy to play super aggressively and try to force birdies, but she just advised us to play for the best score possible and the results would come,” Smith said. 

Nogalo continued to excel in the first round on Sunday, hitting a 2-over-par 72, making her tournament score (72-77-72). Smith finished with a 223 total, and Yun and Richter followed with scores of 228 and 229. 

The Bison B-team finished seventh in the tournament, posting a 320 score. 

The Terriers scored an 888 over the 54 holes, beating the Bison by eight strokes. Although the Orange and Blue’s sub-900 score was not low enough to win the tournament, it was the first time in team history that a score that low had been recorded at a 54-hole tournament. 

Despite the loss, Smith reflected on the pride she felt for her team, as well as what she plans to work on going into the future. 

“I plan to work on my chipping and sand game as well as my full swing mostly,” Smith said. “I am super excited! I feel like our team has put in a lot of work these past couple of weeks and have really come together as a team. It makes me excited for what’s to come and I know we have the capability to play really well going forward.” 

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