One for the History Books

It was an historic year for the Scripps Ranch High School’s Women’s Golf Team, as it excelled above and beyond all expectation! This team has shown its potential in multiple ways. First and foremost, we beat an outstanding team and our longtime rival, Cathedral Catholic High School at Riverwalk Golf Course.

The entire varsity team of eight girls qualified for the City Conference Golf Tournament: Riya Pandit, Hannah Matteson, Franchesca Garcia, Shivani Bhushan, Nikitha Gopal, Jolina Bui, and Mariah Roach. Two of these eight girls—Riva Pandit and Nikitha Gopal—qualified for top 16 match play at the Rancho Bernardo Country Club.

Sophomore Nikitha Gopal won the first round of match play and made it to the top eight! Senior and team captain Riya Pandit was awarded the “Most Spirited Award/Sportsmanship of the Year” from the City Conference Golf Tournament.

To the team’s surprise, SRHS had a low enough scoring average to be placed for a “CIF’s Play-In Match” against Chula Vista High School. SRHS, having a positive attitude and strong level of motivation, won this play in match, shooting 226 against Chula Vista, who shot 258. Winning this play-in match meant that for the first time in school history, SRHS’s Women’s Golf Team qualified to go to California Interscholastic Federation (CIF) play! In the past, many players qualified individually for CIF but never before as a team.

At the CIF tournament, held at Admiral Baker Golf Course in early November, the team placed sixth amongst the top 12 teams in the Southern California region. Since the top eight teams automatically qualify for the next day, SRHS was back at it again, placing seventh out of the eight teams.

“This year is so special for everyone just because we broke school records. Not only that, but this team got so many new faces, new personalities, which made this year the most unique,” said Riya Pandit.

Her coach, Todd Wilson, adds, “Every time we play a match, the other team’s coach makes it a point to come to me and say, ‘You have great girls. We love playing with them,’ and that’s something that I’m proud of. Not every team we play has the most experienced golfers, but I’m lucky enough to say that our team never makes them feel like that. They’re always so welcoming and friendly, which is extremely important in a game like this.”

Junior varsity players Audrey Ball and Taylor Fennell agree that, “One of the best memories we’ve had was when we all randomly decided to go to Chuck E. Cheese’s as a team bonding event. It was in the middle of the day, so we were the only people in there. We all just ordered pizza and took pictures with all the dolls.” Taylor adds, “It was just so funny. We all felt five again.”

Riya Pandit, SRHS Senior