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Union College Adds Women’s Golf

Darren Carroll, Getty Images

The Union College Athletic Department might be best known for their men’s hockey and football programs but they also have 25 other sports offered by the college. 

Make that 26. 

Union College announced today that the sport of Women’s Golf will become a varsity sport, a member of the Liberty League and member of NCAA Division III in the fall of 2012.

The home course for the program will be Mohawk Golf Club, located at 1849 Union Street in Schenectady. The first coach for the program will be Mary Ellen Burt, who also coaches the Union women’s basketball program.

“Union College is proud to now offer the sport of golf to prospective women’s student-athletes,” said McLaughlin. “We look forward to a future that brings quality students into this program, and I am pleased that Mary Ellen can provide them with guidance in the classroom and community as she does so well with our women’s basketball student-athletes. Her extensive resume, knowledge and dedication to the sport will bode well as this program develops in the Liberty League and in NCAA Division III.

“Union College Athletics has a rich and glorious history, dating back to 1860. So it is very fitting that our home course will be Mohawk Golf Club. This is a prestigious course that also has a magnificent history, and our student-athletes and their opponents will enjoy and appreciate every round. We appreciate President William Socha and the Board of Governors at Mohawk Golf Club for their efforts in this opportunity.”

“I am excited to start the women’s golf program at Union College this fall,” said Coach Burt. “Starting out as a club team for this year will provide the opportunity to work with players currently on campus and recruit an incoming class to compete in the fall of 2012. Having the Mohawk Golf Club as our home course adds to the thrill as it is one of the premier courses in our area, it has a fantastic practice facility and a first class overall reputation. The Board of Governors has been enthusiastic in welcoming the College to the Mohawk Club and I think the blend between the two institutions is a perfect fit.

“I have a strong passion for golf and play on the competitive amateur level. I also have a strong passion for Union College and welcome the opportunity to work with student athletes on their game. It is a lifetime sport that will stay with the students well after they graduate from Union College. The Liberty League already has a number of schools that offer women’s golf so this will give us an immediate competitive arena.”

Prospective members learning of the Mohawk Golf Club’s history will know that Mohawk is not just another country club. It has always been unique in the Northeast. In the summer of 1937, Sports Illustrated announced a “search foWalter Hagen was a member of the committee. Mohawk’s number 1 hole appeared among the Par 4’s and was among distinguished company which included Augusta National’s number 10 and Baltusrol’s number 18.

Over four million rounds of golf have been played at the Mohawk Golf Club since the Club began in 1898. Many of the amateur and professional players were quite prominent. Perhaps none more so, however, than Gene Sarazen, whose double eagle on the 15th hole of Augusta National, won the masters in 1935. Sarazen also won the PGA championship in 1922, ’23 and ’33; the U.S. Open in 1922 and ’32; and the British Open in 1932, all four of which are Grand Slam events.

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