The women’s golf team won their third consecutive Midwest Conference title last Sunday at Aldeen Golf Club in Rockford, Ill.
“I think we had a really good season. We started off with a win, won our home game and ended with a win, so I’m pretty happy about [my] first season,” said Vrishali Sinha ’19.
While the College has a longstanding tradition of high performance in athletics, the women’s golf team has stood out in particular this season. Comprised of four first-years and two second-years, this team spent the season dominating tournaments and shattering school records. Assisted by twins Vrishali and Vidushi Sinha ’19, and under a new coaching staff, women’s golf truly has had a spectacular season.
At the Conference tournament, the Pioneers rolled past competition, finishing with a three-day event score of 1018 – 84 strokes better than runner-up Carroll University. As icing on the cake, the Sinha twins took the top two spots: Vidushi finished first with 235 and Virshali finished second at 241.
The Pioneers’ success at the Conference tournament was a capstone on a season in which the team could seemingly do no wrong.
“I don’t think there’s anything that could have been improved. We were all pretty focused and dedicated,” said Sam Hengst ’18.
The team is clearly very satisfied with their season but still has high aspirations for the future.
“We had four out of six players make it to All-Conference, so maybe our goal next year is six out of six?” Hengst said.
Head coach Jennie Jackson also has high expectations for the team. In an email to The S&B, Jackson wrote. “I believe this team will be able to compete at the national level, but we are just a little bit young still this year. In the years to come, I really believe we will be able to compete at NCAA’s and hopefully come home with a title!”
Players and coaches alike are very pleased that such a high level of performance came from a team with no upperclassmen. This allows the same Conference-winning group to play together for two more years, while undoubtedly attracting new talent in the years to come.
“It was an interesting dynamic, and I think it really helped us bond and create a strong foundation for our team,” Hengst said.
While many athletic teams have few upperclassmen, few can claim the level of success that the women’s golf team has had. The team’s standout season also comes in the wake of a recent change in coaching. Jackson recently stepped up to the position of head coach from her father, David Arseneault, who is the current head coach of the men’s basketball team.
“It has definitely been an interesting dynamic this year,” Jackson wrote. “I am still getting to know the players, and they are still getting to know me. A lot of this fall was spent observing them and learning their games.”
As a whole, the women’s golf team is one of Grinnell’s most promising athletic teams for the future. The team is clearly not content to simply rest on their laurels and will return next season ready to accomplish even greater things.