PACOIMA — Things took a turn for the better for Burbank High girls’ golfer Irene Maemura and the Crescenta Valley squad on Monday during the fourth Pacific League match of the season at Hansen Dam Golf Course.
Maemura became the first athlete from the league field beside Crescenta Valley’s Jocelyn Chia to earn medalist honors this season, while Crescenta Valley took another step closer to winning its first league championship since 2007.
Maemura carded a three-under-par 37 to edge Chia, the league’s defending individual champion, by one stroke. Crescenta Valley recorded a 205 to best Arcadia by 10 strokes.
“Everything seemed to be working for me, and I hit my shots with consistency,” said Maemura, a sophomore. “I got up and down on the course.
“It was absolutely a goal of mine [to get low-medal honors]. This can only boost my confidence. I was a little nervous before, but now I’m really playing with confidence.”
Chia, the reigning All-Area Girls’ Golfer of the Year, turned in another quality round. The junior registered an eagle on the par-5 fourth hole.
“I’m happy with my round, said Chia, who earlier won league matches at Alhambra Golf Course, De Bell Golf Club and Santa Anita Golf Course. “My iron shots were fine, but some of my shots weren’t very straight as I wanted them to be.”
Crescenta Valley received a 39 from Audrey Chung, 43s from Andrea Han and Alice Yoon and a 45 from Gina Chung.
Crescenta Valley, which has recorded 16 points, can gain a piece of the league championship at 1 p.m. Monday during the 18-hole league prelims at La Cañada Country Club. If the Falcons, who finished second in league last season behind Arcadia, win at least one of the nine-hole events, they would at least split the league crown. Should the Falcons win both nine-hole increments, they would win the league title outright.
Arcadia took second with a 215. La Cañada earned a 231 for third place, San Marino was fourth (236), Burroughs took fifth (245) and Burbank finished with a 268 for sixth.
Arcadia is in second place with 18 points, followed by La Cañada and San Marino (15), Burroughs (nine) and Burbank (five). The top three teams automatically qualify for the postseason.
“The season is taking it’s course,” said Crescenta Valley Coach Lee Pope, who was selected the All-Area Girls’ Golf Coach of the Year after leading the Falcons to a sixth-place finish at the CIF Southern Section Central Team Divisional. “At the same time, we are trying not to get ahead of ourselves.
“We are looking good. We feel good. We still have some things to get done [Monday].”
Arcadia, which has won four league championships in a row, got a 40 from Kayla Yn, 42 from Ashley Cheou, 44s from Michelle Cheung and Mikaela Santos and a 45 from Joyce Chu.
La Cañada, in its second year in the Pacific League, received a 37 from Melissa Leo, a reigning All-Area honoree. Jennifer Kim finished with a 43 for the Spartans, who got a 45 from Keilee Bessho, 52 from Megan Lee and a 54 from May Lo.
La Cañada Coach Rich Wheeler said taking third Monday might have the Spartans in good position to advance to the playoffs.
“We had to have it today,” Wheeler said. “Next time will be at our place and there’s nothing better than being able to play at home.
“Everybody is getting better on our team.”
San Marino was led by Caroline Van Hiel, who finished with a 42. Elizabeth Van Hiel had a 46 for the Titans, who got a 48 from Gaby Arifin, a 49 from Tess Denham and a 51 from Valerie Wang.
San Marino Coach Wyeth Collo said he expected a better outcome from the Titans.
“We have to work on some things, like out short games,” Collo said. “We have to be more committed to our shots and go back to working on the fundamentals.
“If you are not focused playing at La Cañada Country Club, you can get punished. It’s not a long course.”
Stephanie Adachi led Burroughs with a 41, followed by Joany Gao, a reigning All-Area pick, with a 42. Alex Chandler recorded a 50 for the Indians, who got a 52 from Evyn Freedman and a 60 from Tiffany Mirabal.
Tess Apinchapong notched a 45 for Burbank, which received a 60 from Kaitlin Brooks, a 62 from Alexis Poche and a 67 from Caitlin McGrath.
The league finals, geared to determine the league’s individual champion, will take place at 11:30 a.m. Oct. 17 at Brookside Golf Course No. 1 in Pasadena.