By SANCHITHA CHARI
Girls Golf came in first place in CIF State Championships on Tuesday, November 14 with an overall score of 383, scoring 7 points above Troy, which came in second place with a score of 390. The team was able to place in the top three high schools (third place) along with Troy and Walnut (who came in first and second respectively) in CIF Regionals on November 9 in order to be eligible to compete in CIF States. This is the first time that Girls Golf has won States, effectively ending a successful season.
Sophomore Coco Yang, junior Dana Choi and Nodoka Honda each shot a score of 74, senior Samantha Cabunag shot a 79, sophomore Alexis Kim shot an 82, and senior Kristin Shea shot 92.
The team reflected the significance of this match. “We were the first team that teed off, so we were watching everyone else’s scores through the live scoring website,” Kim said. “We were excited to see that we were in the lead! This round was very special because it was literally the last round of the season, and we played so well as a team. It was above and beyond what we expected and we were so happy.”
The team recounted the shock and excitement in winning for the first time. “We didn’t expect to win so that was a surprise,” Choi said. “This was by far the most important game as our goal was to just get to State. I’m satisfied with how I did and how far we’ve come as a team. This was the best way to end our season.”
Shea agrees with Choi’s reflection of this final stage in the competition. “We were competing for the state championship, but coming in today we honestly didn’t think we would win,” Shea said. “The chance was there but we were already so grateful that we made it this far. We’re still in a state of shock, and I’m so proud of everyone. This was a once in a lifetime opportunity and I’m so glad I ended my last season strongly.”
Cabunag reflected on how far the team has come throughout this season. “I could’ve been a lot worse but my goal was to just have fun since it’s my last high school golf tournament,” Cabunag said. “I’m really proud of how our team played since this course was fairly difficult. This season has been so great, and we’ve accomplished and grown so much as a team. I wouldn’t have done it any other way with any other team.”
Overall, this was a very eventful season for Girls Golf and was filled with new accomplishments. This season saw the the first UNI golf team, qualify for or win CIF State Championships. The only other UNI sports team to have won CIF State Championships is Boys Tennis.