STOCKTON — Camdan Indelicato waited three years to get another shot at the Sac-Joaquin Section Masters Championships, and he once again came up just short of qualifying for NorCals.
The Ripon Christian senior led area golfers with a 2-over-par 73 Monday at Elkhorn Golf Club, one stroke shy of joining a playoff for the fourth and final individual berth to the California Interscholastic Federation NorCal Regional Championship. Chad Flory also threatened for a spot, pacing Ripon with a 74.
The top three teams advance, along with the top four individuals not part of qualifying teams. Davis Sr. claimed the team title with a 369 and was followed by Granite Bay (378) and Jesuit (382). Ripon placed seventh out of 13 with a 411, and Ripon Christian was 10th with a 424.
Cosumnes Oaks’ Zachary Mate carded a 69 and defeated Ryan Calcagno of Rio Americano in a sudden-death playoff for medalist honors. Josh Leiker of Rocklin is the third individual qualifier with a 71, and it was Jake Aberle (72) from Lodi who came out of the four-man playoff for the final NorCal bid.
Indelicato was confident with his score as he checked into the clubhouse but did fear that a few hiccups late in the round could cost him.
“I was a little bit nervous,” Indelicato said. “Looking at the list, it was looking like I was going to be the third best individual with three or four groups still out there. Of the last 16, it turned out that three of their scores beat mine. I played fairly well and put up a good number today, I just had one mishap.”
Indelicato, who started on the first hole, was 1-under through 14 but dropped a stroke after missing a short par putt on 15. A mishit iron shot on the 17th led to him getting a double bogey.
In his freshman year, Indelicato won the SJS Division VI Tournament individual title and finished three strokes off the NorCal cut at Masters. The SJS did not hold postseason events in the spring of 2020 and the entirely of 2021 because of the COVID-19 pandemic.
“It’s my second time coming within a few strokes of the cut,” the Stanislaus State-bound Indelicato said. It’s just good competition, that’s what it is. I’ve played in a lot of tournaments through different junior golf (associations), and I’ve played with all of the guys who finished at the top today.
“I gave it a run, but now I’m just looking forward to what comes next.”
While disappointed to not make a run at the state tournament, he and the Knights have much to be proud about after repeating as Southern Athletic League and SJS Division VI team champions.
Wyatt Hayes (82), Cade Van Groningen (86), Ethan Schenk (88), Trey Van Groningen (95) and Nick TeVelde (97) also participated for Ripon Christian.
“As a team we did not do too bad,” Indelciato said. “Coming from D-VI, I’d say for the most part we held our own.”
Division V champion Ripon produced a solid score and can build on its terrific season with most its players coming back. Backing Flory’s 74 was Trent Vink with an 81. Flory is the reigning MVP of the Trans-Valley League, and Vink won Most Outstanding Golfer. Both are juniors.
“We’re a pretty talented group this year, and the kids stayed focused in spite of the lack of competition in our league season,” Ripon coach Chris Musseman said. “I was just really proud of the way they battled and fought today, and they did that pretty much week in and week out.
“Trent would have had a better day, but he tripled his first hole and was pressing knowing he had to shoot even or better to move on. So, he was really going for it after the triple bogey instead of making the right shots.”
Freshman Vince Uecker added an 82, while sophomore Jermie Little posted an 85. Seniors Jacob Baird (89) and Gage Anderson (92) played their final round for the Indians.
The NorCal tournament is next Monday, May 23 at Berkeley Country Club in El Cerrito. The state championship takes place June 1 at San Gabriel Country Club.