Women’s varsity golf to become new opportunity on Hilltop next year

Claire Winkeler , Crier Stafff

“The best part is that, come fall of 2022, we will all be new to the program, so we can learn and grow as a team and pave the way for women’s golf at St. Anselm’s,” Coach Watt commented. “For anyone who is thinking about joining the team, I encourage them to put themselves out there and try.” 

Tara Watt, the first Head Coach of the Saint Anselm College women’s golf program, radiated energy and enthusiasm talking about the upcoming season. 

Watt started playing golf when she was 13. Her mother had a friend who played golf, and she was first introduced to the sport through him. Golf was the one sport that gave her a challenge, and it challenged her to work hard and get better. She had an incredible career and has a unique love for the sport. Watt’s favorite thing about golf is that people can play it their entire lives. You can enjoy the game at virtually any age. Along with that, it’s made to be played worldwide, and it’s brought many amazing people into Watt’s life.

The program is officially starting at the beginning of the 2022-23 academic year. After assembling the team, the Hawks will compete in the Northeast-10 Conference. Assumption, Stonehill, Saint Rose and Adelphi are some of the many competitors they will be up against in their first semester. The team will practice and host tournaments at the Derryfield Country Club in Manchester, about 15 minutes from campus. The team itself will be small, anywhere from 5 to 8 players. 

Women’s golf is rapidly getting more attention in colleges. More than “62% of NCAA Division II institutions sponsor women’s golf as a varsity sport,” the Saint Anselm Hawks Athletics page says. Competitive, inclusive sports for women have been slowly growing in interest over the years. Although, for sports that are mostly known as being male dominated, like golf, new programs like this Saint Anselm team need recognition and support. An article by The Association for Consumer Research has data that shows that “male golfers comprise approximately 80 percent of the golfer population, a proportion that has not changed substantially over the last decade.” 

Saint Anselm, however, is making great strides in adding more sports for young women on campus to excel in. In addition, they are trying to help programs get the support they need and add a wider diversity of sports and clubs for their students. This new golf program is just the beginning for women at Saint Anselm. 

While every student has their own preferences and interests of what sport they like to watch, it’s important to spend time supporting new clubs and sports so that Saint Anselm is a well rounded community. Just being able to have a woman’s varsity golf team is incredible, but what is more important is that the team feels supported by its students. That’s the most important thing students can offer, support. In the end, that’s what the Saint Anselm community is all about. Take that extra step, show school spirit, and help welcome the new golf team in whatever way you can.