By Jesse Muñoz/COC Sports Information Director
SOLVANG, Calif. — College of the Canyons has claimed the 2018 California Community College Athletic Association (CCCAA) Southern California Regional Championship, the fourth in program history, after besting runner up College of the Desert by 44 strokes and seeing freshman Jessie Lin win the individual regional championship.
Canyons was led by Lin's three-under-par round of 69 on Sunday which helped to open up a huge day one lead for the Lady Cougars at Alisal River Golf Course in Solvang.
Lin, who hails from Kaohsiung, Taiwan, followed that up with a one-under round of 71 on Monday for a two-day total of 140. That total topped the field and narrowly edged out the performance turned in by COC freshman Haruka Koda who placed second overall at 145 (72/73).
Koda's even par round of 72 during Sunday's opening round helped set the tone for Canyons which totaled a four-player score of 298 after the first 18 holes. Koda had previously claimed the Western State Conference (WSC) individual title at last week's event. She also medaled at four conference events during the regular season.
Freshman Paige Heuer (76/83) and sophomore Joanna Roecker (81/78) were also instrumental in COC's regional championship victory. The duo tied for eighth-place in the individual standings with identical two-day scores of 159.
Canyons (603-298/305) was followed by Desert (647-329/318), Santa Barbara City College (659-334/325) and Saddleback College (664-329/335) in the standings. All four programs will now advance to the CCCAA State Championship Tournament being played Nov. 11-12 at Morro Bay Golf Course.
Sierra College won the CCCAA Northern California Regional Championship with a 36-hole score of 640 (313/327). Modesto College (651-318/333), Reedley College (663-327/336) and Fresno City College (706-357/349) took the next three spots to extend their season another week.
Lin's individual regional title is the first for COC since sophomore Kristin Grimes claimed the same title in 2012. As a team, Canyons has appeared at the regional championships on 16 occasions, having won four titles (2000, 2001, 2007, 2018) and finished runner three times (2002, 2010, 2014).
Canyons went on to win a state championship after winning regional titles in both 2001 and 2007, and will look to continue that trend this weekend in Morro Bay.
COC is making its ninth appearance at the state championship tournament. Last season, Roecker and Chung helped lead the Lady Cougars to a seventh-place finish at the event. Canyons also finished runner up at the event in 2014.
Action is scheduled to get underway at 9 a.m. Sunday, Nov. 11. Day two is slated to begin at 8:30 a.m. on Monday, Nov. 12.
CCCAA Southern California Regional Championships — Nov. 4-5, 2018 — Final Team Scores
1. Canyons (603-298/305) 2. Desert (647-329/318) 3. Santa Barbara (659-334/325) 4. Saddleback (664-329/335) 5. Mt. SAC (722-355/367) 6. Fullerton (728-365/363) 7. Cuyamaca (739-378/361) 8. Palomar (741-373/368) 9. Bakersfield (775-393/382)
CCCAA Southern California Regional Championships — Nov. 4-5, 2018 — Canyons Individual Scores
Jessie Lin (140-69/71-medalist); Haruka Koda (145-72/73-second place); JoJo Roecker (159-81/78-tie eighth place); Paige Heuer (159-76/83-tie eighth place); Gina Chung (167-84/83); Shabana Poswal (179-91/88).
Stay up to date on all this season's action by following the College of the Canyons Athletic department on social media at @COCathletics on Twitter, Instagram, Facebook and YouTube.