University's Ellen Takada tees off during the CIF-SS team girls golf championships at Lakewood Country Club.

CdM just misses winning CIF-SS Team Regional


LAKEWOOD - Corona del Mar coach Mike Starkweather shook his clenched fists and let out a frustrated growl as he looked at the leaderboard in the clubhouse at Lakewood Country Club on Monday.

“One stroke,” he said. “Just one lousy stroke.”

That’s all that kept the Sea Kings from winning the CIF-SS Southern Team Regional. Corona del Mar and La Serna of Whittier were tied for first place after each posted a team score of 391. The score from both teams’ sixth player was used to break the tie, and the Lancers beat the Sea Kings by five strokes, so the championship went to La Serna.

After the prizes had been awarded, the Sea Kings huddled around their coach, and suddenly Starkweather’s disappointment melted into a sense of pride. He pointed at the shiny second-place plaque, and told the players that it was the first trophy he had taken home in 20 years of coaching girls golf at the school.

“It’s the chemistry that makes a good team,” Starkweather said, “and when you have that chemistry and have that drive, this happens.”

Starkweather wasn’t the only coach vexing over one stroke at the end of the regional.

University placed third with a score of 392. Had the Trojans come in at 391, the championship would have been theirs, because Uni’s sixth player shot an 86. La Serna’s carded a 90.

“It is kind of disappointing, really,” University coach Kevin Kapser said. “But that is golf.”

He took consolation in knowing the Trojans will join La Serna and Corona del Mar on Thursday in the team qualifier for the WSCGA Southern State Regional.

“We still have some golf left to play, but it would have been nice to win (Monday),” Kasper said.

Corona del Mar junior Alyaa Abdulghany won medalist honors, shooting a 5-under par 69. She holed four birdies and one eagle in posting her fourth consecutive round in the 60s.

“That (shooting the 60s) is kind of like a prerequisite for me now,” Abdulghany said. “I am really proud of my team, though, they have come so far.”

The Sea Kings were the only team in the tournament to have two players finish in red numbers, as Amy Matsuoka posted a 2-under 72.

“They lead by example and they work really hard,” Starkweather said of Abdulghany and Matsuoka. “And the girls are riding the wave with them.”

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