Palo Alto finished off a fourth straight undefeated season in the Santa Clara Valley Athletic League with a 182-220 dual-match boys' golf victory over rival Gunn on Thursday at Santa Teresa Golf Course in San Jose.
The Vikings moved to 12-0 in league and 14-0 overall, stretching their four-year league win streak to 48 straight. Paly will take aim at a fourth consecutive league tournament title on Tuesday, also at Santa Teresa.
Talent at the top, plenty of depth and the addition of newcomer Sergi Mata helped keep the Vikings perfect once again.
"Sergi Was a nice surprise," said Paly coach Doyle Knight. "After losing John Knowles last year (to graduation), I wasn't sure who was going to take his spot."
Knight already had a solid lineup with Ahmed Ali, Matt Lewis, Joonsung Ha, Henry Hughes and Henry Gordon, but Mata just made the Vikings even deeper.
"All the guys are playing well," Knight said. "Their averages have come down by 2-3 strokes across the board since last year. And my 7-8 players are as good as my 5-6, but with less experience.
"We are deeper this year, making everyone have to focus on their game more so they don't loose their position. It's very exciting to be in this position. I hope the guys are enjoying it, too."
Against Gunn, Ali led the way with a 3-under 33 from the black tees with Mata two strokes back at 35. Lewis finished with an even-par 36 with Ha and Hughes shooting 39. While Gordon's 43 didn't count in the five-man scoring, it was still better than two of Gunn's scorers as the Titans (7-5) were led by matching 42s from Andy Zhou and James Berger.
Gunn snapped a five-game losing streak with an 8-3 win over visiting Fremont on Thursday in SCVAL El Camino Division action.
The Titans (4-6, 5-15) got off to a good start when junior Charlie Racz slammed a two-run homer in the first inning. Racz's homer, his first of the year, easily cleared the left-field wall and gave the Titans a lead that they did not relinquish.
Sophomore Shiva Bucklin followed with a three-run homer in the third. That blast went out to left-center and gave Gunn pitcher David Clarke some breathing room with a four-run lead. Bucklin homered for the second time in as many games, his previous home run coming in a loss to Woodside on Monday.
Xavi Loinaz and Clarke each scored a run and contributed two hits, while Josh Radin, and Clarke contributed RBI to the winning cause. Clarke pitched a complete game while giving up two earned runs on five hits.
Palo Alto held on to its share of first place in the SCVAL De Anza Division race following a 12-2 victory over visiting Mountain View on Thursday night. The Vikings (6-1, 10-4) held the Spartans scoreless until the fifth minute of the fourth quarter when Paly had all of its reserves in the match.
"It was more of a testament to our defense than anything else," said Paly coach DJ Shelton.
Paly jumped to a 5-0 first-quarter lead and rolled from there, holding Mountain View to just 20 total shots for the game. Matthew Seligson led the way with four goals and three assists on seven shots with Cole Tierney adding three assists.
Palo Alto will host St. Francis on Saturday at noon in a nonleague match to celebrate Senior Day.
In the PAL Bay Division, Menlo School took an early lead and never looked back in a 13-6 win over Menlo-Atherton at home Thursday on Senior Day. The Knights (3-1, 9-8) staked out a 7-3 lead by the half.
Sophomore Nick Frangione tallied three goals and two assists while sophomore Ryan Murphy contributed two goals and two assists. Senior Peter Gish had a hat trick and finished the week with eight goals and an assist.
Sophomore David Schmaier added a pair of goals and an assist. Junior Charlie Ferguson picked up six ground balls, a goal and an assist. Jack McNally, a junior, finished with seven saves for the Knights, who take on first-place Sacred Heart Prep on Tuesday at home at 4 p.m.
The Menlo-Atherton girls finished off a perfect dual-meet season in the PAL Bay Division with a 114-56 victory over host Burlingame on Thursday. The Bears wrapped up a 7-0 league mark (9-0 overall) and grabbed the favorite's role for the upcoming league meet finals on May 7, also at Burlingame.
Menlo-Atherton had two double winners in Izzi Henig and Nicole Dundas. Henig, who transferred in from Castilleja, took the 200 free in 1:53.63 and the 100 fly in 58.97. She also swam on the winning 200 medley relay (1:53.56) and anchored the winning 400 free relay to a 3:42.87 clocking.
Dundas won the 50 free (26.39) and 100 back (1:03.96) and swam on the winning 200 free relay (1:45.49).
The M-A boys, meanwhile, finished 6-1 (7-1-1 overall) and in second place to undefeated Carlmont following a 107-63 victory over Burlingame.
Vincent Busque helped lead the Bears with a solid 1:46.74 to win the 200 free and a 49.58 to take the 100 free. He also swam on the winning 200 medley relay, anchoring it to a 1:48.78 triumph.
Jak Tedesco also was a double winner for the Bears as he won the 200 IM (2:14.74) and 100 back (59.56). He also swam on the 200 medley relay and helped the 200 free relay win in 1:35.39.
Jack Jensen and Timmy Berthier joined forces to capture the doubles title at the Peninsula Athletic League Individual Tournament that wrapped up Thursday at Burlingame High. The M-A duo produdced a 5-7, 6-4, 6-2 triumph to claim the crown.
M-A teammate Reed Fratt claimed third place in singles with a 6-4, 6-3 win over Hal Tuttle of Woodside.