Windy conditions, a tight golf course and a talented field didn’t knock Brooke Riley off course.
Buoyed by solid play off the tee and four birdies, the East Union High School sophomore fired a 3-over-par 76 on Monday to finish third at the NCCA/CIF Girls NorCal Championship and earn a coveted spot at the state tournament.
Riley birdied the 16th and 17th holes at Spring Creek Golf and Country Club to earn the berth.
“It’s crazy,” she said. “I don’t know how to feel. I’m so excited to go to State.”
She’s the first girls golfer from Manteca to qualify for the CIF Championships, which will be held Nov. 20 at Quail Lodge in Carmel Valley.She’s also the first Stanislaus District girls golfer to qualify since Enochs High’s Shawnee Martinez, who reached the tournament in 2010 and 2011.
The top three teams and nine individuals not on those teams qualified. Riley’s Lancers squad, which finished second last week at the Sac-Joaquin Section Masters tournament, finished ninth on Monday.
Palo Alto’s Michelle Xie, who aced the 144-yard fifth hole with a 5-iron, was medalist with a 73. Elizabeth Schultz of Acalanes was second at 74.
Riley got off to a solid start by birdieing the first hole, a 404-yard par 5. She bogeyed 4, 5 and 6 before bouncing back with a birdie at the 457-yard par 5 eighth. After a double-bogey par 3 12th and a bogey on the par 3 15th, she sunk a 20-foot birdie putt on 16 and birdied 17.
“I was a little scared with the wind and how narrow it is, but I hit my driver good all day,” she said. “I got a little too fancy out there sometimes. Otherwise, I played pretty well.”
For full results, click here.
The Bee’s Ron Agostini contributed to this report.