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Bearcats build on freshmen starlets

Posted: Friday, Oct 7th, 2016

Nicholas Mattson/Paso Robles Press Paso Robles High School freshman Josie Scruggs chips onto the sixth-hole green at Paso Robles Golf Club on Tuesday.

PASO ROBLES — In high school golf, there are more ups and downs in a season than there are bunkers at Paso Robles Golf Course, and depending on where a team sits on that teeter-totter in a dual match determines a win or loss in the PAC 8.

Consistency is key to a winning season, and on Tuesday, it was Atascadero High School that took the round in the league match against Paso Robles High School at PRGC, beating the Bearcats on their home course, 255-275.

“With all the different courses that teams play around the county, it is pretty cool for a team to come in and shoot that low of a round,” PRHS head coach Chris Owens acknowledged. “My hats off to Atascadero.”

AHS senior Morgan Humphrey led all scores with a 43 to earn medalist honors. AHS junior Tess Lewohn also broke the 50-stroke mark, hitting a 47.

Coming off their best performance of the season — taking third at the PAC 8 League mini tournament at Rancho Maria Golf Course the previous Thursday with a 251 — the Bearcats struggled on Tuesday.

“Last Thursday, we maneuvered ourselves to move up in the rankings,” Owens said. “It was the first time we came together and played to that level.”

A bump in the road on Tuesday gave Atascadero the win, but with matches still left to play, Owens and the Bearcats are not slowing down the effort.

“The hope is always to get that score as low as possible,” Owens said. “It is a team effort. We struggle with consistency. That was shown yesterday, we faltered a little bit against Atascadero.”

Golf legend Bobby Jones said “Competitive golf is played mainly on a five-and-a-half-inch course...the space between your ears,” and leaving each hole behind to take on the next is a lesson every golfer faces.

“The goal is really progress,” Owens said. “I talked to the girls after the match about consistency. It really comes down to a couple girls playing well.”

Owens said he has been happy with his team’s play, and its ability to stay within reach of the league leaders.

“I think 250 is really the magic number for the teams this year,” Owens said. “All the teams are right in that realm and it is phenomenal to see the girls playing in that range.”

During the Sept. 29 PAC 8 tournament at Rancho Maria, PRHS freshman Josie Scruggs matched Mikayla Stone with a 46.

On Tuesday, Stone led the Bearcats again.

“Stone led the team with a 50, which is a little high for her,” Owens said, “and Kayla Hernandez shot a 52, and finished the round with a chip in par. It was a great shot off the green somewhat. It was the first time she hit a par on that hole.”

The season is winding down for the PAC 8 teams, and the hope for a team CIF bid is all but out of reach, but the Bearcats are hopeful for an individual spot.

“If we were to shoot all our rounds at the CIF level, we would still miss it by one or two,” Owens said, “[but] Mikayla is sitting on the border of taking one of those individual CIF spots.”

Paso Robles hosts Righetti at PRGC on Tuesday at 2:30 p.m.

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