Foothill League girls’ golf is going to be tight this season. That fact was reaffirmed on Wednesday as the Valencia Vikings won the opening match by one stroke.
Valencia narrowly beat out the West Ranch Wildcats, winning the match with a team score of 190 strokes at Vista Valencia Golf Course.
West Ranch’s Kathryn Mong medaled in the opener but was the only Wildcat under 38 strokes, while the Vikings had three golfers at three under the mark.
Mong led all golfers with 31 strokes (-2).
Jillian Leh and freshman Kara An led Valencia with 32-stroke days (-1). Lauren Silva just trailed with 33 strokes.
Vikings head coach Robert Waters has a mix of returners and freshmen in his 2023 lineup, which is now undefeated in league play.
“We are very fortunate to have some talented, hard-working girls this season,” Waters wrote in an email. “They have high standards and rightfully so. The returners have worked their tails off in the off-season and we were very fortunate to pick up two incoming freshmen who have done an amazing job thus far.”
Ashmita Goel and Eva Lee added 35-stroke days for the Wildcats. West Ranch also saw a quality day from Kate Yi, who finished the day with 36 strokes.
“I am absolutely expecting a competitive, tight season between us and West Ranch,” Waters wrote. “It’s going to be a fun battle and the girls are very excited to play each week.”
Saugus’ Khloe Guerrero led her team with 37 strokes.
Bailey Lieberman led Golden Valley with a 43-stroke outing.
For Valencia, the San Francisco University commit Leh has been steady all year and has her sights on snapping West Ranch’s chokehold on the Foothill League title.
“Our senior phenom, Jillian Leh, has been steady all season,” Waters wrote. “It is impressive to watch her play. She’s so steady and rarely makes a mistake.”
Valencia will need to stay as close to perfect with the Wildcats right on their tails and other Foothill League teams just one match away from jumping into the mix.
Foothill League teams will meet again for the second league match on Wednesday back at Vista Valencia. The first round of golfers tees off at noon.
“It is all about improving each week,” Waters added. “Eliminate mistakes and continue to find that repeatable swing. The team who can do that will see themselves on top at the end of league play.”