PASADENA — The girls golfers from the Pacific League are dealing with different criteria this season in regards to who qualifies, and eventually wins, the league individual championship.In years past, a player’s cumulative score would be factored in with how she places in the league finals tournament to determine a winner. However, that has been changed, and a player only needs to qualify for the final round where there will be a winner-take-all format.“I think that is a good way of doing it,” said Burbank Coach Branko Sevic, who added the top eight finishers in league play leading up to the finals and any player within five strokes of the eighth spot will qualify for the league finals. “It’s like in a major golf tournament, they don’t factor in all of Tiger Woods’ scores from the previous tournaments and somehow add that to the current tournament he’s playing.”Crescenta Valley Coach Lee Pope respectfully disagrees.“Jocelyn Chia has been the best golfer in the league for the last three years,” said Pope of the Falcons athlete and three-time All-Area Girls’ Golfer of the Year. “If she wins her share of league tournaments going into the finals and somehow has a bad day and finishes third, you can’t say she doesn’t deserve to be the league champion.“I am a team player and I have agreed to go along with it. But with this new format, it’s not really the player of the year that we’re awarding but the player of the finals.”League athletes were jockeying for those all-important spots Wednesday when they competed in the fourth Pacific League tournament at Brookside Golf Course No. 2.As has been the standard this season, Chia turned in another solid performance, tying La Cañada senior Melissa Leo for medalist honors, as the two shot 38s. It was the second time in four league matches that Chia has tied for the lead.“I didn’t think I did very well today,” Chia said. “My ball-striking was not very good today and that was a problem for me. Sometimes you just have one of those days where things just don’t go the way you want them to. Golf is weird.”Spartans Coach Rich Wheeler said Leo’s familiarity with the course was a benefit to the senior.“Yeah, she’s played this course quite a bit, and that helped her a lot,” Wheeler said. “Also, she’s a senior, and she knows that she has to get it done this year. But she’s been playing very well and she’s been leading us.”While individual achievements might have taken center stage in the tournament, teams were also vying for league supremacy. For the third match, Arcadia bested Crescenta Valley, as the Apaches scored a team total of 200 compared to the Falcons’ 219.Crescenta Valley also received 42s from Audrey Chung and Andrea Han, a 49 from Gina Chung and a 48 from Alice Yoon.Burroughs (231) stepped up to take the third sport, as the Indians were followed by San Marino (240), La Cañada (241) and Burbank (280).For the Indians, their scorers were Joany Gao (43), Katrina Villareal (44), Stephanie Adachi (46), Evyn Freedman (46) and Raelinn Arnold (52).Burbank was paced by Irene Maemura, who won a previous league event and tied Chia in another. Maemura carded a 40 and was followed by Alexis Poche (53), Caitlin McGrath (58), Caitlyn Brooks (60) and Kailtin Brooks (69).“It’s very important for us to do well as a team,” Pope said. “We have already qualified as one of the teams from our league to go to the playoffs. Really, the only team to beat us all season is Arcadia.“Individually, we would like to see Jocelyn get to state and team-wise we want to at least get to the second round of the team playoffs.”Behind Leo, the Spartans received scoring efforts from Keilee Bessho (44), Megan Lee (50), Annie Bae (53) and Hannah Chew (56).The league players will convene in the fifth tournament Oct. 2 at Santa Anita Golf Course.
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