Menlo School senior Andrew Buchanan and Sacred Heart Prep junior Bradley Knox have extended their prep seasons to the fullest following Monday's NCGA/CIF Boys Golf Championships at Diablo Grand Resort in Patterson.
Buchanan shot an even-par 72 while Knox shot a 2-over 74 as both were among nine individuals earning trips to the CIF State Championships, which will be held June 5 at Quail Lodge Golf Club in Carmel Valley. This will be the first state finals for both local players.
A year ago in this tournament, Buchanan shot 75 and tied for 23rd. He missed competing in a playoff for the last individual state berth by three shots.
Buchanan earned that coveted berth this time as he shot a 1-under 35 on the back nine -- featuring three of the course's four toughest holes -- to start his round.
He opened with a birdie on the 402-yard par-4 10th and added another birdie on the 180-yard par-3 11th. He went bogey-birdie the next two holes before suffering another bogey on the 517-yard par-5 16th.
Buchanan had two bogeys and one birdie on the front nine for a 37. He finished with four birdies, 10 pars and four bogeys. He went as low as 2-under but never higher than 1-over.
"I've really enjoyed my four years at Menlo and look forward to my last opportunity to compete at the junior level (at the state finals)," Buchanan said. "The state finals are a great culmination to the years I have spent playing junior golf and I hope to represent the Knights in fine fashion."
Knox started on the front nine and shot 38, picking up three bogeys before getting a stroke back with a birdie on the 509-yard par-5 ninth -- the easiest hole on the course.
On the tough back nine, Knox carded three straight pars before registering a birdie on the 375-yard par-4 13th. He dropped another stroke on the 397-yard par-4 16th but parred in for a 36.
Sacred Heart Prep, which was in third place with eight teams still having players on the course, lost out on one of the three coveted state team berths.
De La Salle won the team crown with a 373 with Mitty taking second at 383. Central Coast Section champ R.L. Stevenson grabbed the final team berth with a 386. Sacred Heart Prep tied for eighth at 399 with Amador Valley in its first-ever NorCal appearance..
Willy Lamb shot 80 for SHP, followed by Derek Ackerman (81), Taylor Oliver (82) and Bradley Keller (82).
All the individuals who advanced to the state finals shot 74 or lower.