Lehigh men’s golf is gearing up for the Patriot League Championship in Phoenix, Maryland, from April 29 to May 1.
The Mountain Hawks finished the season on a high note. After placing 13th at the University of California San Diego Invitational, they rebounded by finishing fifth at the Columbia Spring Invitational, third at the Wildcat Invitational and first at the Abarta Coca-Cola Collegiate Invitational Invitational on April 17.
“I don’t think we could have done any better,” head coach Henry D’Alberto said. “We finished fifth three events ago, then third, and now first, so we kind of have some momentum.”
D’Alberto, who is in his 17th season as head coach for Lehigh men’s golf, expressed high praise for his players this season.
He said the team had possibly the best season of any team he’s ever coached.
Two players who have contributed to Lehigh’s success in this campaign are seniors David Hurly and Daniel Song.
Hurly earned Patriot League Golfer of the Week honors earlier this month and has had a strong showing on the course since. Hurly tied for second place at 3 under par at the Wildcat Invitational and tied for ninth at the Abarta Invitational, making four birdies on the first nine holes.
Song earned two Patriot League Golfer of the Week honors in the fall but has found mixed results in the spring. Song tied for 32nd at the Wildcat Invitational, making three birdies in the second round and one in the final. He finished fourth at the Abarta Invitational with four birdies in the final round.
“For the spring season, we kind of got off to a slow start,” Song said. “But we’re back on track, and we won this week at the Lafayette golf tournament, so I think that gave us greater momentum going into (the) Patriot League Championship.”
The Patriot League Championship will be a three-day event with 18 holes played each day. The team with the lowest total score at the end of the tournament will be crowned conference champion.
The Mountain Hawks look to dethrone back-to-back champions Loyola University Maryland and reclaim the Patriot League title for the first time since 2013.
Despite the hardships the men have faced across the season, Hurley said he is ready and up for the challenge of the championship.
“I’m excited because we have a really good team, and I think this is by far been the best opportunity for me to win one with the team,” Hurly said. “I’m in my fourth year so that’s really what I’m looking forward to for sure.”
The Patriot League Championships will be hosted by Loyola University Maryland at the Hillendale Country Club.
Along with Loyola University Maryland, Lehigh will also be facing off against Army, Bucknell, Holy Cross, Colgate, Lafayette and Navy.
Each team will bring six golfers to the championships, with only the top four scorers in each round counting toward the team score. A strong performance from Lehigh’s top performers may position the Mountain Hawks for a chance to bring home the title.
“My expectations are that, if we keep doing what we’re doing, we’re gonna have a chance on Sunday to win,” D’Alberto said.