After 75 holes and four matches, Harvard and Brown remained deadlocked, and a late match rally had provided junior captain Theo Lederhausen a chance to advance his team into the tournament’s semifinals.
But a strong tee shot by Lederhausen’s opponent on the 18th propelled the Bears to a 3-2 victory in the weekend’s opening round of Ivy League match play at the TPC Jasna Polana in Princeton, N.J.
This final hole was one of several missed opportunities for the Crimson, which ended up 1-2 on the weekend.
In the team’s final tournament of the fall, Harvard followed the defeat with an equally close 3-2 loss against Cornell in a consolation round before defeating a composite team of players from several Ivy League squads.
Host Princeton defeated Dartmouth, 3-1-1, in the tournament’s final.
Despite setbacks and losses, Lederhausen is pleased with what he has seen from the team this fall.
“The results weren’t what we would have liked for the weekend, but we played well today,” Lederhausen said after Sunday’s rounds. “Overall, we’ve learned that we definitely have a very deep team. We have seven guys who can all compete, which has been great to see. Everyone’s stepped up at different times.”
With its fourth and final tournament of the fall season completed, Harvard will resume play in March. By then, Harvard hopes to be at full strength. A wrist injury prevented key junior Seiji Liu from competing at Princeton, and freshman Rohan Ramnath made his debut for the Crimson this weekend, playing through stubborn back problems.
Still searching for its first Ivy League championship since 1975, the Crimson’s fall has provided the team with opportunities to feel the pressure of competition in close matches.
With three out of its four tournaments coming down to the wire in either the final day of stroke play or on the final holes of match play, the Crimson’s relatively young squad will look to use this experience in the upcoming championship season.
HARVARD 4, COMPOSITE TEAM 1
The Crimson concluded the weekend on Sunday afternoon with a 4-1 win over a composite team comprised of players from Brown, Penn, Princeton, Harvard, and Yale.
The Crimson’s round three consolation game included a hard-fought intra-squad match between No. 3 Ramnath and junior Kevin McCarthy, who went 0-2-1 overall as a member of the composite team throughout the weekend. Ramnath clinched the match after the 17th hole for a 2&1 win.
Lederhausen, Harvard’s No. 1 for the tournament, defeated Yale’s Thomas Greenhalgh, 6&5, while sophomore No. 2 Akash Mirchandani lost, one up, to Matt Gerber of Princeton.
Freshman No. 4 Un Cho and junior No. 5 Michael Lai defeated Penn’s Patrick O’Leary (6&5) and Brown’s Jack Mylott (5&4), respectively.