After nearly five months away from the course, the Binghamton golf team is set to open its spring season Sunday at the Kingsmill Intercollegiate, hosted by William and Mary.
“They’re definitely excited,” said BU head coach Bernie Herceg. “They’ve done some great work over the winter, in the offseason, when we were indoors … the guys have worked really hard, and they’re ready to start out on a pretty good note.”
The Bearcats failed to play up to par during their fall season. The Bearcats registered a fifth-place finish, out of 16 teams, at the Binghamton Collegiate Invitational. But, BU finished no higher than ninth in any of its other four fall tournaments and concluded its season on Oct. 20, when they finished 14th out of 16 at the Elon Invitational.
“The guys are really looking forward to having a good spring,” Herceg said. “I don’t think we played as well as we could have in the fall. So they’ve got some good goals set for themselves and working on the process to have some better scores.”
Typically, the Bearcats’ only opportunity to practice outdoors comes by way of a team trip to Florida prior to the start of the spring season. But after Binghamton’s mild winter this year, BU managed to play on courses at home earlier than normal. Herceg believes that more time on the green could prove to be a major benefit to his squad this season.
“Being able to hit balls outside, let alone play the golf course is really huge because we can compete against each other, get the competitive juices going,” Herceg said. “It’s definitely an advantage, and I feel like we are a little bit better prepared than we were last year.”
Senior Jesse Perkins was a key contributor for the Bearcats in the fall. At the Cornell Invitational in September, the veteran tied for ninth place in a field of 77 competitors. He shot a season-low 68 in the opening round of that tournament and delivered a team-best 75.3 strokes per round. Perkins will be looked upon to lead Binghamton in the spring.
“[Perkins] has five collegiate events left and he’s really prepared himself,” Herceg said. “I really feel he’s going to have a good spring. He’s in a good mindset and he’s working hard at it. I have a feeling he’s going to be very competitive in every event we play in.”
Combining with Perkins to lead the Bearcats will be junior Kyle Wambold, who also averaged 75.4 strokes per round in the fall, and classmate Sameer Kalia, who averaged 75.5.
The Bearcats are set to tee-off at the Kingsmill Intercollegiate on Sunday in Williamsburg, Virigina. Start time for the event has not yet been announced.