These past two weeks have certainly been historic for the Islander Girls Golf Team as the varsity players completed post-season play in the 2022 CIF San Diego Section Championship Tournament. In addition to the Sectional Tournament, juniors Ines Izuzquiza and Bella Villarin advanced to the CIF/SCGA Southern California Girls Regional Championship in Pasadena after two grueling rounds at two separate courses. Adding to the season’s list of “first evers,” for the first time in Coronado High School Girls Golf, two Islanders qualified to play in the Regionals Tournament.
Day 1 of the CIF Sectional Tournament was held at Vista Valley Country Club, a notoriously hilly and challenging course with tight fairways and plenty of slope. Several water hazards scattered throughout the course, either jutting through the fairway or lying dangerously near the green. The greens were also much faster than what the girls were used to at their home course of Coronado Golf Course, but that didn’t stop the Islanders from making some impressive shots.
Since the last few groups of the tournament did not finish eighteen holes due to lack of daylight, the players were given automatic pars on the last five holes regardless of their previous score. This ruling both helped and hurt the scores.
Junior Ines Izuzquiza led the team with a solid round of six-over par 77. She carded three birdies in the last five holes, which were unfortunately erased because of the automatic pars, so she would have shot an even better round of 74. Bella Villarin followed with an 81 after carding two doubles and a triple on the front nine. Fellow junior Jasmine Lo had displayed her usual consistency, scoring an 86. Freshman Elleaire Lyons shot a 92, and senior Mariella Avanni rounded out the Islanders with a 93.
Coronado’s combined score of 69-over par put the team in seventh place out of ten teams competing. The Islanders were also ranked third in Division 2 after the first day of play. The cut to move on to the second day was set at 17-over par for individuals, but the Islanders made it to the next round as a team.
Day 2 of the Sectional Tournament was held at the infamous Torrey Pines North Course. Conditions were exceptionally windy and it had rained the morning of the tournament, making the greens slick and the grounds damp. Torrey Pines is also known for its thick rough, and the day of the tournament was no exception. Missing the fairway was a costly mistake that forced players to utilize the best of their course management skills.
Villarin carded a round of 74, the third lowest score for the day, for a total score of 11-over par for the tournament. She ended up tying for seventh place out of 71 players who participated in the second day of the tournament. Izuzquiza shot a round of 82 for a combined score of 15-over par, which tied her for fifteenth place. Lo had another solid round of 88, and Lyons carded a 95. Mariella rounded out the Islanders with a 97.
With a cumulative score of 145-over for the two days, the Islanders ranked third in Division 2 and sixth overall.
The top fifteen individuals, including ties, moved on to Regionals. Villarin and Izuzquiza both participated in the Southern Girls High School Championship on November 10 at Brookside Golf Club in Pasadena. For the first time in Islander history, two players on the varsity team made the cut to Regionals. 114 golfers from San Diego, Los Angeles, and the Central Valley squared off to see who would make it to the State Finals.
Brookside Golf Club had a plethora of both greenside and fairway bunkers. Trees also lined the fairways, forcing players to drive straight and long. The greens were also exceptionally small, and the pins were located in tight positions. Temperatures hovered around the low 40s during check-in and the 8 AM shotgun start was not much warmer. It was the juniors’ first time competing in Regionals, so all the mistakes made were excellent learning experiences.
Ines carded a round of ten-over par 83 and Bella a round of twelve-over par 85. Despite the scores, the girls gained new insight on what aspects of their game they could improve on the most, and this experience definitely will prepare them to face next year’s challenges. Both juniors also made all-CIF first team, another significant yet unsurprising accomplishment for the duo.
With the close of the 2022 Girls Golf fall season, the Islanders have left indelible marks in the athletic history of Coronado High School. Ending with a league record of 10-0 and overall record of 11-5 has surpassed previous seasons as well as individual records and team accomplishments. Per tradition, the girls concluded the season with a team banquet to celebrate their numerous achievements. Be sure to look out for these girl golfers next season in 2023! Go Islanders!