Winning district golf titles has proven to be quite routine over the past 10 to 15 years for the Columbus boys’ golf program. But all of that changed Monday afternoon.
Wanting to prove knocking off Columbus for the first time in more than 15 years in a dual meet tournament six weeks ago was no fluke, the Miami Springs boys’ golf team went out and did it when it really counted.
Led by Pat Bolton’s 1-under par 70 and a 2-over 73 by Kyle Safreed — the best rounds for both — the Golden Hawks edged the Explorers by two shots, 298-300, in the District 23-2A tournament at Miami Springs Country Club. And with that, Springs dethroned the Explorers of their longtime hold on the district trophy.
“Beating [Columbus] a few months ago was big because now we knew what we could do when we went out there and played the kind of golf we’re capable of playing,” said Bolton, who recorded five birdies and four bogeys in his round. “This is a great moment for our program, and now we want to keep it going.”
The Hawks and Explorers are not done facing each other. Both, along with third-place finisher Miami Beach (321), advance to next week’s regional tournament at Hillcrest Country Club in Hollywood. Miami Beach, thanks to a 73 and 74 from Beau Clavijo and Max Shelvin, respectively, was a surprise third-place finisher, nine shots better than Belen.
Columbus’ Juan Yumar wound up reeling in medalist honors with a 3-under, 68 but it would have been a 66 had he not double-bogeyed the last hole.
That proved to be the difference in team scores when Safreed, one of the last players on the course, birdied his final two holes, causing the four-shot swing in Springs’ favor. Luke Llaneras (77) and Pat Perez (78) rounded out the Springs’ scoring.
“Just a terrific effort by all of the kids [Monday],” Springs coach Roger Piermarini said. “Beating Columbus earlier in the season was definitely a big plus as it gave our kids a great deal of confidence.”
Elizabeth Hopkins helped Miami Beach to the girls’ team title and earned medalist honors with a 98.
BOYS’ TEAM RESULTS
Top 3 advance to regional’s
1. Miami Springs 298
2. Columbus 300
3. Miami Beach 321
4. Belen Jesuit 330
5. Ronald Reagan 346
6. Mourning 469
BOYS’ INDIVIDUAL RESULTS
1. Juan Yumar (COL) 68
2. Pat Bolton (MSP) 70
3. Kyle Safreed (MSP) 73
4. Beau Clavijo (MB) 73
5. Max Shelvin (MB) 74
6. Julio Betancourt (COL) 76
7. Luke Llaneras (MSP) 77
8. Rafa Martinez (COL) 77
9. Pat Perez (MSP) 78
10. Francisco de la Torre (COL) 79
INDIVIDUAL REGIONAL QUALIFIERS
1. Marcos Montesano (RR) 80
2. Daniel Perez (BEL) 80
3. Tyler Sloman (KR) 81
• Miami Christian d. Coral Gables 7-0: High Games Alex Roque (MC) 205, Daniel Cortes (MC) 187. High Series: Alex Yaniz (MC) 643. MC 7-3.
• American d. HML 5-2: High Game: William Zepka (HML) 156, Carlos Ibanez (AHS) 152. High Series: Zepka (HML) 428; Orlando Perez (AHS)426. AHS 3-4.
• American d. Reagan 7-0: High Game: Briana Futch (AHS) 224; Natalie Ochoa-Odon(R) 136. High Series: Futch (AHS) 546; Ochoa-Odon (R)377. AHS 6-2.
TERRA d. La Salle 25-22, 26-24, 25-17: Brooke McDermott 15 kills, 8 aces, 4 blocks. Katie Barrow 15 assists. Mimi Peñas 14 kills, 5 aces, 1 block. TER 18-0.