The last time the Hilmar High boys golf team was this good, the Yellowjackets concluded their season with a Sac-Joaquin Section trophy. Of course, it's too soon to predict such an outcome.
But after Monday's Western Athletic Conference Tournament at the Diablo Grande Golf Course, it's difficult to think otherwise.
The Yellowjackets pulled off a 476-501 win over runner-up Central Catholic High.
It marked the beginning of a promising postseason run for Hilmar, which finished 13-0 in the WAC and 19-0 overall. Jesminder Singh led the Yellowjackets by firing an 86, followed by teammates Raine Martinez (92), Zack Ribera (96), Jonathan O'Brien (100) Taylor Bettencourt (102) and Eric Youngborg (105).
“I've got some kids who put a lot of time into their game,” Coach Ty Pettigrew said. “Beginning of the year, they all kind of thought they can do it. They believed in themselves and they believed in their teammates.”
Those half-dozen Hilmar golfers average under 50 strokes per nine holes.
In 2004, the Yellowjackets were 12-0 in the league and 17-0 overall before capturing the SJS Division III title.
Next up is the Division V Tournament at the La Contenta Golf Club in Valley Springs, with a shotgun start at 9 a.m. Monday.
Bulldogs take CCC tourney
For the fifth consecutive year, a Smith was the top boys golfer at the Central California Conference Tournament.
This time, it was Paul Smith, who led Turlock High with a 2-over par 72 to give the Bulldogs their sixth tournament win in the last seven years with a score of 402, outscoring runner-up Golden Valley High by 25 strokes. It also locked the team's seven straight CCC championship.
Securing the third and final CCC berth at Monday's Division I South Championships at Brookside Country Club in Stockton was Pitman High, which finished with a team score of 431, just five points ahead of fourth-place Buhach Colony High.
In the previous four tournaments, Sam Smith, now at USC, took home the individual titles.
Behind Paul Smith, Travis Souza shot a 77, Taylor Sellers notched an 82, Jeffery Chapman carded an 83 and Tyler Gomes finished with an 86.
To contact Chhun Sun, e-mail at email@example.com or call 634-9141 ext. 2041.