Potomac’s Golf Team Includes Girls for the First Time in Ten years


Courtesy of Annabel Widdifield

Freshman Annabel Widdifield at a recent Potomac golf tournament.

Charlotte Castle, Co-Editor-in-Chief

As Potomac Golf wraps up its 8-1 season record as runner-up MAC champions, the team includes girl players on their roster for the first time in ten years. Potomac is the only school in the MAC not to have girl players in the last decade.

Annabel Widdifield and Katie Lee, the two freshman girls on the team, both view being a part of the team and participating in tournaments as an opportunity to represent other girls in golf and attract more girls’ participation.

“I think it’s a really cool and unique experience being on the team,” Katie said. “I feel like we can make change happen, and me and Annabel both really want there to be new rules where girls can play from tee yardages that are closer to the hole so it’s more fair with older players.”

This could possibly be implemented in the unconfirmed upcoming ISL golf championship, which takes place in the spring and only girls participate. Head Athletic Director Erica Woda remarked how “there’s no official golf for the ISL, but last year a couple of different ISL schools competed in a golf invitational. The hope is that they will run the same event and we will be able to include our girls.”

Golf tournaments involve six players from each school, but the ISL tournament, at least in the past, has been an individual event, “so we will be able to make it work,” said Coach Woda. “I just don’t know the tournament format at this time because there’s no date, no course, but I will probably know more by January.”

In the meantime, Head Golf Coach Mike Hutton is working to further improve gender diversity on the team by reaching out to girl players in sixth and seventh grade at Potomac. He hopes to encourage further interest in the program and have more girl players join once they reach high school. 

He remarked that both Katie and Annabel “have earned instant respect from the boys with strong play and work ethic on the driving range. I think they’ve challenged our guys to become better players, which makes us a better team overall.” 

“Once we got out on the course and I saw them play, I thought they were really good,” said senior male player Sam Cristinzio. “I knew that the team was going to be really good this year, but the girls really paved the way for more girls to come play in the future. I assume it was probably nerve-wracking for them and uncharted territory to play on an all-boys team, but it’s definitely going to pay off when more girls feel comfortable to join the team. In the end, they were just part of the family.”

Although the official golf season ended in October, this year’s girl participation looks promising in promoting greater gender diversity on the team in the future, and possibly further representation this spring in the ISL championship.