Turlock High golf coach Mary Krupka admittedly had high hopes for her team when it competed in the 2013 Sac Joaquin Section Division I South Tournament at Turlock Country Club Monday.
Saying she had hoped her team would finish among the top three teams in the tournament, she was only slightly disappointed when the Bulldogs placed second behind first-place Lodi, which shot a collective 481 to finish 12 strokes ahead of Turlock at 493.
The Bulldogs, sparked as usual by their junior one-two punch of Bergen Benedict and Sarah Garcia, played well enough to place one stroke ahead of third-place Merced (494); all three teams making it into the Section Master Tournament Monday at The Reserve at Spanos in Stockton.
“Merced and Turlock have been battling for years, with only one or two strokes separating us,” explained Krupka. “Lodi is a real good team but they do graduate five seniors this year. And we know how that is since we graduated eight seniors last year.”
The aforementioned juniors, Benedict and Garcia, who shot 91 and 97 respectively, played quite well said Krupka, who also complimented Pitman High’s Taylor Beckwith, who will be moving on to Monday’s Section Master Tournament in Stockton.
Beckwith, who Krupka said “is a very good player and has a chance to do well Monday as an individual,” finished fourth with a 94, just behind her Pitman teammate Jasmine Ryan, who carded a 93. Sheyenne Bailey was next for the Pride at 101.
The winner was Enochs’ Alyce Padilla 85, who was followed by Buhach Colony’s Heather Parker at 90.
“Turlock Country Club played pretty tough (Monday),” said Krupka, “and I think the scores reflected that. But I was proud of the way we battled; you never know in this game, and that’s the great thing about our team, we really are a team from one through six.
“A lot of teams throw out their No. 6 player’s score but we don’t. We have had some matches this year where our No. 1 or 2 players may not play well but someone else picks them up by playing well.”
Sofie Bates shot a 99 and Brooke Vierra an even 100 for Turlock while teammates Michaela DeBos and Lynde Sutton finished with respective scores of 106 and 110.
“Monday is going to be interesting because The Reserve at Spanos is a very challenging course,” said Krupka, “but I expect us to do well there. It would be great if we can play well enough to get into the Northern California Tournament for the first time.”