Paul Park qualifies for CIF Individual Regional

BURBANK — While waiting for the official scores of the Pacific League’s Individual Tournament to be tallied, Paul Park leaned forward in a chair Wednesday on the deck at De Bell Golf Club eagerly awaiting word as to whether his latest result would extend his season.

The Crescenta Valley High boys’ golfer figured the odds were with him despite playing in a 16-player field that was dominated mostly by powerful Arcadia.

When Park received confirmation he qualified for the CIF Southern Section Individual Tournament, he immediately felt relief.

“I didn’t play good, but I still made it,” said Park, a junior who carded a nine-over-par 80 to finish fourth in league with a season total of 379 after taking 10th in league last season. “I started off well, but then I had some trouble again toward the end and I got a little tired.

“It’s a privilege to finish in the top six.”

The top six finishers from the Pacific League qualified for the individual tournament, which will take place May 13 at River Ridge Golf Course in Oxnard.

Park, who shot a 76 on Tuesday during the league prelims, was the lone area athlete to move to the individual tournament. He will be flanked by five Arcadia players.

Crescenta Valley first-year Coach Lee Pope said Park persevered throughout the season, which included sharing medalist honors in a league match at De Bell on April 11.

“His goal was to make the top six and he got that done,” said Pope, whose team finished third in league and will next participate Monday in the CIF Southern Section Northern Team Divisional at Soule Park Golf Club in Ojai. “Now, it’s about trying to extend his season.

“He had a little bit of a cushion coming into the final round. He had a tall order of trying to catch the top player, but he did what he needed to do.”

The Arcadia athletes who also advanced were highlighted by Jonathan Lai, who shot an 82 to finish at 364 and win the league’s individual crown. Joining Lai are Bryan Shin, who had a 73 for 370, William Oetojo (77 for 370), Kevin Chen (75 for 381) and Vamsi Damerla (84 for 387).

Also competing for Crescenta Valley were Adrian Chia and Cody Renfro. Chia carded an 84 for a season total of 398 (13th place), while Renfro finished with an 86 for 407 (15th).

Burbank, Burroughs and Glendale also had at least one player participate in Wednesday’s round.

Russell Caletena of Glendale recorded a 79 to finish at 392 for ninth place. Sammy Do shot an 86 for 405 (14th).

Burbank, fresh off a second-place finish in league, had a trio of players compete Wednesday in Brady Dunayer, Andy Chung and Austin Tatka. Chung shot a 78 to finish 10th at 397, followed by Dunayer (76 for 397 for 12th) and Tatka (101 for 426 and 16th place).

“We had a couple of tough breaks,” Burbank Coach Frank Childress said. “If anything, they learned that you have to play consistent throughout the year and we had a couple of blow-ups.”

Burroughs, which placed fourth in league and qualified for the playoffs, received a 79 from Daniel Kesicbasian to place 11th at 393.

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