Men’s golf finishes 7th, women get 3rd

The St. John’s golf teams were both in play this weekend. The men’s team continued their season with another solid effort and a seventh overall finish at the McLaughlin. The women came out of the gates with a third-place overall finish in their season debut at the Princeton Invitational.

Women’s Golf

Junior Renee Cloutier was outstanding for the women at Princeton. She finished second overall after dropping a playoff with Georgetown’s Chelsea Curtis. The two finished the regulation 36 holes tied at 147, which was Cloutier best result of her career. On day one, her 71 at the par 72 course was the low round of the tournament, and the third lowest round in St John’s women’s golf history – Renee also holds the team record for the lowest round ever, shooting a 66 at the par 69 Legends Shootout as a freshman. Coach Ambry Bishop-LaRosa said before the season started that Cloutier’s strongest quality is her consistency, and after the tournament reiterated that point.

“This was a very strong showing for the team in its first tournament of the year,” she said. “Renee was solid this weekend, posting great scores.”

But for the team to finish third overall, behind only Harvard and host Princeton, it took more than just one outstanding performance. Fellow junior Michelle Romano finished in a three-way tie for the ninth, shooting a stellar 154. Ashley Szewczuk also finished in the top 50, shooting a 162. The women’s team will be in New Haven Connecticut this weekend, playing in the Yale Fall Intercollegiate.

Men’s Golf

The men’s seventh place finish in a field of 18 was a team effort, headed by junior Mike Ballo Jr, and senior Kevin Velardo who finished back-to-back with scores of 212 and 213, respectively. Those scores were good for tenth and 14th places due to tied scores. This was Ballo’s second straight finish in the top ten, after finishing tied for seventh overall at the rain-shortened Maryland Invitational. Head coach Frank Darby was appreciative of some nice weather, and confident the team will improve.

“We had a great field of teams this year and great weather to go along with an amazing golf course,” said Darby.
“Our team struggled a bit, but the team is very close to being on the track we need to, in order to be successful.”

After the Red Storm’s top two, the rest of the team was headed by senior Casey Calmi’s 221, good for 43rd place. After a weekend off from tournament play, the men’s team will be Florida-bound, starting off October at the Mission Inn Classic.