ARCADIA — On an afternoon of small surprises from both the Crescenta Valley High and Burbank boys’ golf teams, a change among the Pacific League leaders wasn’t shocking.
Host Arcadia High jumped ahead of Crescenta Valley in the third league match and took control of its league title fate by defeating the short-handed Falcons, 370-394, on Thursday afternoon in a match in which Burroughs was third with 407 points, Burbank was fourth with 421 points and fifth-place Glendale tallied 443 points on the par-71 Santa Anita Golf Course in Arcadia.
“I was really proud of the effort my guys put forth,” Crescenta Valley second-year Coach Lee Pope said. “We were down our No. 1 player, but we still had two CIF qualifying scores and had our junior varsity guy step up.”
The Falcons, who have won one match in league versus two victories for the Apaches, were dealt a blow before the teams arrived for action when senior Paul Park, an All-Area player a year ago, did not participate due to a previous American Junior Golf Association tournament commitment.
However, even with Park’s participation, it would have been difficult for the Falcons to topple red-hot Arcadia.
The Apaches’ 24-stroke victory was fueled by a match-best even-par score of 71 from Arcadia’s Andrew Baek and a one-over 72 from Showta Moriyama, who carded the No. 2 score Thursday.
Overall, the Apaches’ five scorers were only a combined 15 shots over par.
“Tip your cap to Arcadia, they were on fire today,” Pope said. “I’m not sure there was anything we could have done to have won today. They played on their home course and just took control.”
Cody Renfro paced the Falcons with a team-best score of 75 and was followed by AJ Roa (77), David Holeman (78), Brandon Cho (79) and Carbajal, the junior varsity call-up who carded an 85.
Crescenta Valley will look to get even with Arcadia at the league’s next match at Griffith Park next Thursday.
While the Bulldogs may have finished fourth overall, they received a breakthrough effort from Jason Apinchapong, who shot an area-best 73.
“This is a course I would rate between medium and easy,” said Apinchapong, who carded three birdies. “I was pretty happy with my score. I was pretty strong with my drive, approach and putt.”
The sophomore tallied an 85 in the league’s first meet at De Bell Golf on March 13 and an 84 at Brookside Golf Course No. 2 on April 10.
On Thursday, Apinchapong was even par through the front nine, which included a 15-foot putt for birdie on the par-five 554-yard third hole.
Apinchapong outdistanced his next closest teammate, John Grasse, who finished with an 82. Dylan Sherry (85), Josh Provost (89) and Joe Grasse (92) followed for Burbank.
Following Apinchapong locally was Glendale’s Russell Caletena, who proved consistent in shooting a four-over 75. Caletena finished two over on both the front and back nines, while securing birdies on the third and 13th holes.
It was the third hole where Caletena just missed an eagle when his 27-foot shot died a few inches in front of the cup, which lead to a tap-in for birdie.
“I guess this was an OK effort, but I could have done better,” said Caletena, who bogeyed the first two holes. “You take away my two bogeys and then I get that eagle and it’s a different score.”
Glendale was fifth and received scoring efforts from Kent Asano (83), Sammy Do (89), Dong Yoo (93) and Arman Aloyan (103).
The area’s only other score in the 70s came from Burroughs’ Daniel Kesicbasian, who led his third-place squad with a six-over 77.
“I’ve been here a few times and it’s a different experience,” Kesicbasian said. “This is a course where if you can get the ball on the fairway, you’ll do well.”
Kesicbasian’s best effort came right before his toughest hole, as the Indians’ golfer delivered a birdie on the par-four fifth hole, thanks to a solid approach shot, and then turned around and double-bogeyed the par-four sixth hole after slicing his approach shot into a tree.
Teammate Sivakorn Losakul (78) was second for Burroughs, who received scores from Patrick Colbert (82), Tnick Trivimol (84) and Louis D’Aquila (86).
Follow Andrew J. Campa on Twitter: @campadresports.