Courtesy of Jerry Hannula-CCCSIA
MORRO BAY – Carolin Chang of Santa Barbara City College and Nao Bando of Sierra College (Sacramento, CA) were battling stroke-for-stroke while paired in the first group of the CCCAA women’s golf state championship. Both players finished with identical 3-under-par 69’s on Monday and posted identical 36-hole, two-day totals of 141.
In a card-off used as the tiebreaker, Chang’s back nine score of 3-under-par 34 earned her the individual medalist title for the second consecutive year. But Bando earned the last laugh as Sierra came from seven strokes back to post a state championship record 294 to earn the team title. It is only the second time that a team north of Morro Bay has captured the state title (Sacramento City College, 2009).
Sierra also received a 69 from Gurman Kaur on Monday while Haley Vandenberg finished at 1-over-par 73. Kaur would place third overall as an individual with a two-day total of 148 and was also 3-under on the back nine to break a tie with Aman Sangha of Cañada College (Redwood City, CA). Kaur would have posted a lower score if not for a double-bogey on the 18th hole.
Santa Barbara, the defending state champions, held a six stroke lead over Cuyamaca College (El Cajon, CA) and a seven stroke lead over Sierra after Sunday’s opening round. The Vaqueros received a 77 from Vanessa Watkins and ended the day with a very solid 309 – three shots better than the first day - for a two-day total of 621. However, the team was not expecting such a turnaround from Sierra and the Wolverine’s two-day total of 613.
“We knew Sierra would play better the second day. They did that in our earlier tournament,” said Santa Barbara head coach Chuck Melendez. “I just wasn’t expecting that big of an improvement.”
Cuyamaca finished third in the eight-team field with a score of 647 while Modesto Junior College placed fourth at 657.
Hannah Lovering of Fresno City College (150) and Araceli Esquivel of Irvine Valley College (151) placed fifth and sixth, respectively, to join Chang, Bando, Kaur and Sangha on the all-state team.