Men’s golf wins three Division I awards
By Elisabeth Lubiak, The Dartmouth Staff
Published on Tuesday, July 24, 2012
After ending their 2011-2012 season with a second place finish at the Ivy League Championship, the Dartmouth men’s golf team continues to receive acclaim for their efforts.
The Big Green swept three of the four major honors bestowed as part of the 2012 New England Division I Golf Awards, announced on Friday.
Big Green head coach Richard Parker took the title of Coach of the Year, while Dartmouth golfer Peter Williamson ’12 was recognized as Player of the Year in the region.
The Big Green also earned the distinction of Team of the Year, an award bestowed by head golf coaches from across the six states.
Parker attributes most of his success as a coach to the players on his team.
“I received the Coach of the Year because we had a ton of talent and they were very coachable,” he said. “They wanted to learn how to get better, and through hard work and dedication, they did.”
Williamson, however, insists that Parker deserves the credit.
“Coach keeps us loose and provides the necessary motivation,” Williamson said. “He’s had a solid competitive career as well, which always helps him put things in perspective. We have a lot of fun on the team, and I believe that’s important in the recipe for success.”
When asked about Williamson’s strengths as a golf player, Parker said he did not know where to begin.
“It would be easier if you asked what are his weaknesses,” he said. “He doesn’t have any.”
Parker added that Williamson consistently plays at an exceptionally high level.
“He really knows how to play a golf course,” Parker said. “Anything he did he really tackled it. He never gave up on the golf course, no matter how bad he was playing.”
Williamson also earned several accolades within the Ivy League.
He was named Ivy League Player of the Year for the third season in a row, becoming the second player in Ivy League history to accomplish this feat.
He also received his fourth All-Ivy honor, a streak only eight other players have achieved.
Although he graduated this June, Williamson said that his golf career is far from over.
“I’m hoping to be successful at the highest levels of golf, both amateur-wise and professionally,” he said. “I will likely turn pro within a year and work on my game in Florida to discover my full potential. Eventually, I would love to use golf as a way to help others, whether through a foundation or personal connection.”
In addition to earning Player of the Year, Williamson also made the All-New England team, along with teammate James Pleat ’13.
Pleat was also named to the Golf Coaches Association of America Division I PING All-Northeast Region team this season.
Looking forward, Parker said he expects the Big Green continue to perform at a competitive level, despite losing Williamson.
“I think we’re going to be OK,” he said. “Obviously, losing the best player in the history of the league is not an asset, but I think we are going to rally. The beautiful thing about golf is that you’ve got to play the game.”
Although the team is focused on their goal of winning an Ivy League Championship, they are also concerned about fostering team spirit, according to Parker.
“In the big picture, my goal is to give these kids the best four years of their lives,” he said. “Coaching golf, there’s much more to it than the golf — we’re a family. We just spend so much time together, it’s great.”