Los Altos High golfer Kelsey Kawaguchi didn’t let an early bogey bog her down. The senior shook off her five-stroke struggle on hole No. 3 to post the best round of her career in winning last week’s Santa Clara Valley Athletic League Tournament.
Kawaguchi shot a scorching 6-under-par 67 at Santa Teresa Golf Course, guaranteeing her a spot in this week’s Central Coast Section championships.
“I didn’t expect to shoot so low after a bogey on the third hole,” she said, “but I just kept playing it hole by hole.”
Kawaguchi nearly notched a double eagle, but her putt on hole No. 2 lipped out.
Even without it, she finished two strokes ahead of runner-up Jessica Luo of Lynbrook Oct. 22. No other golfer in the 38-player field shot below 70.
“I was slightly nervous toward the end, because I didn’t know what to expect,” said Kawaguchi, who has committed to UC Irvine. “Throughout the round, I had to keep my emotions in check, even when I had a bogey or missed a short putt.”
Kawaguchi wasn’t the lone local golfer to qualify for the CCS event, scheduled Tuesday (after the Town Crier’s press deadline) at Rancho Cañada Golf Club in Carmel. The St. Francis girls team made it after winning the West Catholic Athletic League Tournament Oct. 21 at Spring Valley Golf Course.
The Lancers – who the week before claimed the WCAL round-robin championship with an 11-1 record – beat runner-up St. Ignatius by 30 strokes at the league tourney. St. Francis freshman Bibilani Liu earned medalist honors with a 2-under-par 70.
“The girls played great – especially my No. 2, 3 and 4 players,” said coach Phil Marrone, referring to Liu, sophomore Valerie Wang and freshman Jacqueline Sun. “I’ve been waiting for the team to start firing on all cylinders, and just recently they have begun to. Hopefully they’ll keep it going through the post-season.”
The Los Altos boys and girls teams set school records at last weekend’s Mt. SAC Cross Country Invitational in Walnut.
The boys’ team time of 82 minutes, 28 seconds broke the school record set two years ago on the 2.93-mile course. They won their division with what coach Dan Oren described as “an extremely low score of just 27 points.”
Six team members earned medals for top-15 finishes, led by Ben Zaeske (second, 16:18) and Andreas Godderis (third, 16:22).
The Los Altos girls clocked a team time of 99:51, breaking a school record from 2005. Lead runner Lauren Jacob set a record as well, finishing in what Oren called “an extremely fast 17:40.”
Boys water polo
For the second consecutive season, Mountain View has swept rival Los Altos in the double round-robin portion of De Anza Division play. The Spartans edged the Eagles 9-7 Thursday after routing them 14-7 Oct. 1.
Mountain View coach Gabor Sarusi described his goalie Charlie Niehaus as “remarkable” Thursday, totaling 16 saves and limiting host Los Altos to just one goal in the first half.
But the Spartans’ 7-1 halftime lead nearly wasn’t enough to beat the Eagles, who outscored them 6-2 the rest of the way.
Rey Castillo and Matthew Dunn finished with three goals each for Mountain View (7-3 league, 9-6 overall).
Two days prior, the Spartans suffered a 6-4 setback to Palo Alto. Mountain View was held to one goal in each quarter. Niehaus made seven saves and scored a goal on a length-of-the-pool lob.
Girls water polo
St. Francis remains undefeated, though Sacred Heart Prep gave the Lancers a scare Oct. 23. St. Francis eked out a 12-11 win over the visiting Gators.
Courtney Batcheller scored six goals for the Lancers, who upped their record to 5-0 in the WCAL and 18-0 overall.
With a pair of victories last week, Mountain View extended its winning streak to seven games.
“The team is really coming together and improving with every game,” said coach Drew Enlow, whose squad went to 9-1 in the SCVAL El Camino Division and 14-6 overall.
The Spartans stymied Santa Clara 12-3 Thursday and topped Fremont 7-3 Oct. 22.
Samantha Hartman scored a season-high six goals against Santa Clara. She and Krysta Korpontinos led Mountain View with two goals each versus Fremont.
Los Altos can all but clinch the De Anza Division title in this second-to-last week of the season by beating the two other teams in contention.
The Eagles (7-1 division) were scheduled to host Homestead (8-1) Tuesday – after the Town Crier’s press deadline – and visit Palo Alto (6-2) 5:30 p.m. Thursday.
The Eagles beat Homestead in the first half of the league season, but they lost to Paly.
Los Altos (23-3 overall) last week swept both its opponents – visiting Gunn Oct. 22 and host Los Gatos Thursday. Junior Carmen Annevelink tallied 16 kills in each match.
Mountain View’s struggles continued last week, with the Spartans swept by Palo Alto and Homestead. Mountain View sank to 1-8 in the De Anza Division and 5-17 overall.
Rosa Lutz led the Spartans in kills both days, notching six against Homestead Oct. 22 and seven versus Paly Thursday.
Homestead received 18 kills from Los Altos resident Casey Carroll against Mountain View.
Pinewood, hosting its annual Dig Pink Rally to raise funds for breast cancer research and treatment, defeated King’s Academy in five games Thursday. Mehra den Braven posted a season-high 40 kills for the Panthers, who improved to 5-4 in the West Bay Athletic League Skyline Division and 12-9 overall.
Two days earlier, Pinewood swept Eastside Prep behind 17 kills from den Braven and 20 assists from her sister, Tehmi.
A 4-0 loss to Los Gatos Thursday dropped Los Altos to 0-10-2 in the SCVAL and 0-12-2 overall.
Mountain View endured another rough week, losing both matches by 7-0 scores. The Spartans slumped to 0-11 in the De Anza Division and 1-12 overall.