Valeria Pacheco-Claudio played better but the results were the same — a third-place medal at the state finals.
The Chaminade-Madonna senior, who will be signing her national letter of intent Thursday with Texas Christian, carded a two-day, 5-under-par 139 at the Class 1A state finals at Mission Inn & Resort in Howey-in-the-Hills on Wednesday.
“I am just happy I played as good as I did. It is kind of funny that I played so much better than I did last year and finished in the same place. But that is golf,” Pacheco-Claudio said. “I had fun.”
It was Pacheco-Claudio’s second-career trip to the state finals, having won a third-place medal a year ago after shooting a 1-under 143.
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But this year, made six birdies during the second round, including back-to-back birdies on holes 4 and 5 and ended up finishing with a 70, which was 2-under par on the 5,624-yard Las Colinas course. She carded a 69 in Round 1 but still finished four strokes back of Orlando First Academy sophomore Ariel Yu, who shot a 9-under 135 to capture the state title.
“I hit pitching wedge on 17 and ended up way behind the green and ended with a bogey. That was my bad hole. My best hole was 13, I reached the green and made birdie,” Pacheco-Claudio said. “I did feel a little pressure just because it was my last year, and I wanted to do well.”
The Sagemont boys finished seventh overall with a 633 after carding a 310 in Round 2, which was 13 strokes better than Tuesday on the 100-year-old El Campeon course, played at 6,601-yards.
Sagemont was led by senior Tyler Pham with a 7-over 151 after finishing with a 75 in the second round. Senior Kolby Nguyen finished at 155 (77-78), and senior Anthony Forcellini added a 160 (83-77).
Ransom Everglades boys finished 14th with a 664 and were two-strokes better in the second round with a 331. Sophomore Jake Beber-Frankel led the squad with a 151 (73-78). He finished in a three-way tie for 16th place with Palmer Trinity sophomore Cameron Piedra, who finished 7-over for the tournament with a 151 (74-77). It was Piedra’s first trip to the state finals.
Pine School senior Garrett Barber won the state title after finishing 10-under par. He carded a two-day 134, which included a 7-under 65 in Round 2.
Circle Christian won the boys’ state championship with a 580. It had three of the top four overall finishers, including senior Daniel Core, who finished second in the state with a 140 and Eugene Hong, and Canon Claycomb, who finished tied for third with a 141.
First Academy girls ended Lake Mary Prep’s three-year reign as 1A state champions, capturing the title with a 565. Lake Mary Prep was second with a 589.
The Ransom Evergladez girls finished eighth overall with a 678. They were led by sophomore Phoebe Beber-Frankel, who finished 11th after carding a two-day 146. She shot 4-over during the second round.
“I couldn’t make a putt the whole day,” Beber-Frankel said. “I was going into the last hole 2-over and I preceded to make a double.”
Also for Ransom Everglades, sophomore Rachel DeAngulo carded an 82 Wednesday to finish the tournament with 158.
“Last year, we shot 29 shots worse so we definitely were improved,” Ransom Everglades girls coach Eric Salomatoff said. “We are still pretty young, so we are looking strong for next year. It wasn’t a great finish for Phoebe, but she will get better.”
The Carrollton girls finished 13th overall with a 756, which included a 385 second-round outing. Senior Tanya Eathakotti led the team with a two-day 153 total.
Pacheco-Claudio’s Chaminade-Madonna teammate, Isabela Bailly finished with a 153, and tied for 24th.