Grizzlies win Division II golf championship

Granite Bay overcomes wind with a dominant back nine at Haggin Oaks
By: Bill Poindexter/Roseville Press Tribune Sports Editor
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As the wind blew through Haggin Oaks in Sacramento on Monday, Granite Bay High School golf coach Terry Stafford counted the scores as they came in.

“When the first two or three came in, I said, ‘Guys, we’re in this,’” Stafford said from a restaurant Monday evening as he and the Grizzlies celebrated their first Sac-Joaquin Section Division II championship since 2006.

Granite Bay overcame the wind with a back-nine blitz on the MacKenzie Course. Three even-par 36s and a 1-under 35 by sophomore Chuck Pedone led the Grizzlies to a 379 total score, three strokes better than Capital Valley Conference champion Christian Brothers. Del Oro, which overcame and then held off Granite Bay to win the Sierra Foothill League crown, finished third with a 398 and earned the final team berth in the section Masters Tournament next Monday at The Reserve at Spanos Park in Stockton.

Lee Gearhart of Woodcreek shared the medalist honor with Austin Smotherman of Del Oro at 1-under 71 and qualified for the Masters Tournament. Corey Eddings of Oakmont also qualified for the Masters with a 75. Oakmont shot a 399, one stroke out of third place.

“It was an amazing day,” Stafford said. “I was most impressed with what the guys did. Our goal was to make it to Masters, and we’re still fairly young. It was huge.”

Granite Bay won three division titles in a row in 2004, ’05 and ’06.

Junior Alex Gibbs shot 36 and 36 for a 72. Brandon Baumgarten shot a 74, Pedone and sophomore Bryan Wise 77 and senior Connor Hallisey a 79. Hallisey chipped in for an eagle on No. 12.

“The biggest thing was three of our guys shot 36 and Pedone shot 35 on the back nine,” Stafford said, adding that Pedone shot 42 on the front nine. “That was a huge turnaround.”

Also for Oakmont, Mike Croisetiere shot 77, Zack Will 81, Kevin Rizzo 82, Josh Will 84 and Ryan Shields 86.

Monday, May 16
Where: The Reserve at Spanos Park, 6301 W. Eight Mile Road, in Stockton
Shotgun start: 8:30 a.m.