Menlo School senior Andrew Buchanan fired a 2-over par 37 to pace the defending champion Knights to a 200-205 West Bay Athletic League victory over Harker at Palo Alto Hills Country Club on Wednesday.
Menlo junior Riley Burgess shot 39 and Ethan Wong finished with a 40. Menlo's freshman pairing of Jeff Herr and William Hsieh produced a pair of 42s.
The match was played in great weather conditions at the beautiful, but tough, Palo Alto Hills front nine. Buchanan's only birdie came on the challenging eighth hole, an uphill par-4, but that was nullified by a double-bogey on the third hole.
One the sixth hole, a par-5, Buchanan's tee shot kicked left downhill and out of bounds, so he returned to the tee and drove his second tee shot to within 215 yards of the hole. Buchanan then hit his next shot to 10 feet en route to saving bogey.
Menlo's match MVP award went to Burgess, who was playing in only his second WBAL match. He got off to a hot start with the putter after making a great par save from 15 feet on the first hole. Burgess proved it to be no fluke with his 10-foot birdie putt finding the center of the cup on the downhill par-3 second hole.
On the 182-yard par-3 fifth hole, his tee shot ended up right and short of the green and was blocked by a tree. Burgess could only chip on to about 20 feet from the pin, but drained his putt to save par.
"I hit the ball really well off the tee today," said Burgess, "and could have easily scored a few shots lower except for a couple of three putts on the tough PA Hills greens."
In another WBAL match, Sacred Heart Prep kept pace with Menlo with a 187-221 victory over host King's Academy at Sunnyvale Municipal.
SHP junior Bradley Knox birdied the second and third holes before finishing with seven pars to record a 2-under 33 for his nine holes. SHP sophomore Mister Keller also had two birdies, which were nullified by three bogeys during his 1-over round of 36 that helped the Gators move to 3-0 in league (5-0 overall).
In the SCVAL De Anza Division, Avinash Sharma shot a 1-under 35 to help Gunn remain unbeaten in league despite a 197-197 deadlock with Mountain View at Palo Alto Municipal Golf Course. The Titans (2-0-1, 2-2-1) also got a 39 from Jack Jaffe, and 41s from Zack Tevanian, Curran Sinha and Herbert Sadler-Wong.
On Monday, SHP's Taylor Oliver shot a 4-over 75 to pace the Gators at the De La Salle Invitational at Diablo Country Club. SHP's Keller and Palo Alto's Grant Raffel each shot 76 while SHP's Derek Ackerman and Paly's Alex Hwang carded 78s.
Getting a bases-loaded walk in the bottom of the eighth inning, Sacred Heart Prep strolled away with a 3-2 nonleague victory over visiting Menlo-Atherton on Wednesday.
The Bears (4-3) brought in reliever Erik Amundson with two on and one out in the eighth and he issued an intentional walk to the Gators' No. 8 hitter, Hank Robson. SHP's Brad Gritsch then worked a four-pitch walk to bring in the winning run as the Gators improved to 7-3 heading into Friday's nonleague game at Burlingame at 7 p.m.
In the SCVAL De Anza Division, host Palo Alto got three hits from Michael Strong in an 11-7 victory over Saratoga, which knocked the Falcons out of sole possession of first place. Strong also scored twice and drove in a pair as the Vikings improved to 2-1 in league (5-4 overall).
Austin Poore, Isaac Feldstein, Alec Furrier and Bowen Gerould all had two hits for Paly, which pounded out 15. Feldstein also drove in two runs. The Vikings blew the game open with 10 runs in the first inning.
Elsewhere, host Gunn fell to 0-3 in league (3-6 overall) following an 11-2 loss to Wilcox. The Chargers (2-1, 8-3) are deadlocked with Paly, Mountain View, Saratoga and Homestead for first place.
The Los Gatos at Sacred Heart Prep, Woodside at Gunn, Menlo-Atherton at Burlingame and Mountain View at Palo Alto matches were not reported.
Less than 24 hours after scoring 15 points in a NorCal Division I basketball semifinal loss to Berkeley, Gunn senior Claire Klausner made her 2013 softball debut in a big way by pitching five innings to get the win and hitting a three-run homer in a 6-5 triumph in eight innings over visiting Cupertino in a SCVAL El Camino Division opener on Wednesday.
The Pioneers scored two runs in the fourth to take the lead before Gunn responded with Klausner's three-run homer in the fifth. Cupertino came right back with three more runs in the fifth, but Gunn (1-0, 2-5) added two more in the bottom of the inning to tie at 5. After a scoreless seventh, the Titans won the game with a two-out, bases-loaded hit by Laura Tao in the bottom of the eighth.
In the WBAL, host Menlo School posted a 7-1 victory over South San Francisco.
The Summit Prep at Menlo-Atherton game was not reported.
Ian Bennett had 20 kills and Grant Chou provided 25 digs but Sacred Heart Prep still dropped a 25-22, 28-26, 25-21 decision to host Saratoga on Wednesday. Matt Hao added 23 assists for the Gators (0-1, 1-3) while Lukas Hruska contributed five blocks and five kills.