It has certainly been a historic two weeks for the Islander Girls golf team as the varsity players completed post-season play in the 2022 CIF San Diego Sectional Championship Tournament. In addition to the Sectional Tournament, the junior Ines Izuzquiza and Bella Villarin qualified for the CIF/SCGA Southern California Women’s Regional Championship in Pasadena after two grueling races on two separate courses. Adding to the list of “firsts” of the season, for the first time at Coronado High School Girls Golf, two Islanders qualified to participate in the regional tournament.
The first day of the CIF Section Tournament was held at Vista Valley Country Club, a notoriously hilly and challenging course with narrow fairways and lots of incline. Several water hazards scattered throughout the course, either protruding across the fairway or lying dangerously close to 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 putting in some impressive shots.
Since the final groups of the tournament did not complete eighteen holes due to lack of daylight, players received automatic pars on the final five holes, regardless of their previous score. This move both helped and hurt the scores.
Junior Ines Izuzquiza led the team with a solid round six on par 77. She birdied three in the last five holes, which were unfortunately erased due to auto pars, so she would have shot an even better round 74. Bella Villarin followed with an 81 after hitting two doubles and a triple on the front nine. Junior Companion Jasmine Lo had displayed his usual consistency, scoring an 86. Elleaire Lyon shot a 92, and senior Mariella Avani completed the Islanders with a 93.
Coronado’s combined score of 69 over par placed the team in seventh place out of ten competing teams. The Islanders were also seeded third in Division 2 after day one of play. The cut to advance to day two was set at 17 over par for individuals, but the Islanders made it to the next round as a team.
The second day of the sectional tournament took place on the infamous north course of Torrey Pines. Conditions were exceptionally windy and it had rained on the morning of the tournament, making the greens slippery and the pitches wet. Torrey Pines is also known for its thick rough, and tournament day was no exception. Missing the fairway was a costly mistake that required players to use the best of their course management skills.
Villarin carded a round 74, the third-lowest score of the day, for an overall score of 11 over par for the tournament. She ended up tied for seventh place out of 71 players who participated in the second day of the tournament. Izuzquiza shot an 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 over 145 for the two days, the Islanders placed third in Division 2 and sixth overall.
The top fifteen individuals, including ties, moved on to Regionals. Villarin and Izuzquiza both competed in the Southern Women’s High School Championship on Nov. 10 at Brookside Golf Club in Pasadena. For the first time in Islanders history, two players from the varsity team have been selected for regionals. 114 golfers from San Diego, Los Angeles and the Central Valley competed to see who would advance to the state finals.
The Brookside Golf Club had a plethora of bunkers on the greens and fairways. Trees also lined the fairways, forcing players to drive straight and long. The greens were also exceptionally small and the pins were set in tight positions. Temperatures hovered around the low 40s when checking in and the 8am shotgun departure wasn’t much hotter. It was the first time the juniors had competed in Regionals, so any mistakes made were great learning experiences.
Ines hit a round of ten on the par 83 and Bella a round of twelve on the par 85. Despite the scores, the girls gained new insights into what areas of their game they could improve on the most, and this experience will certainly prepare them. meet the challenges of next year. Both juniors also made the all-CIF first team, another big but unsurprising achievement for the pair.
With the end of the fall 2022 women’s golf season, the Islanders have left an indelible mark on Coronado High School’s athletic history. Finishing with a league record of 10-0 and an overall record of 11-5 topped previous seasons as well as individual records and team accomplishments. As per tradition, the girls concluded the season with a team banquet to celebrate their many accomplishments. Be sure to watch out for these golfers next season in 2023! Go Islanders!