Galdiano, Punahou win easily
KAANAPALI – No one in the 48-year history of the Hawaii high school state golf tournament has won four individual titles.
After her stroll to a victory at the Royal Kaanapali Course on Wednesday in the David S. Ishii Foundation Championship, Punahou School freshman Mariel Galdiano admitted a quartet of crowns is now on her mind.
Galdiano shot a 2-under-par 69 to win the 36-hole event by seven strokes over Waiakea senior Ciera Min. Galdiano finished at 5-under 137, posting the only red scores in the 66-player field.
“I always just take one shot at a time and play what the course gives me,” said Galdiano, who qualified for the U.S. Women’s Open two years ago.
Is it too soon to think about four state titles?
“No, it could happen,” Galdiano said. “Probably.”
The Buffanblu also rolled to the team title, winning by a record 37 shots over Waiakea. Punahou had an even-par 213 team score Wednesday for a 9-over total of 435.
“It was a lot of fun, since there’s three other freshmen, so I have people from my class and I don’t feel alone,” Galdiano said. “It’s a lot of fun.”
The Buffanblu will lose three seniors, but had six players in the top eight – their seventh player was 12th – in winning the team title for the sixth time in seven years after finishing second to Iolani last season.
“All the girls work really hard, they play all year round and they play a lot of competitive golf,” said Punahou coach Ed Kageyama. “They are competitive with each other. They get better in practice – no one wants to let anyone else down and they are all good players dedicated to the game.”
The Buffanblu also counted Allisen Corpuz’s 71 and defending state champion Kacie Komoto’s 73 on Wednesday.
Komoto has received a golf scholarship from Northwestern University.
“With practices that we have been having and playing with all my teammates, I have been improving a lot more,” Galdiano said.
That is bad news for the rest of the field.
“Every part of her game is awesome and she hits it super far out there,” said Min, who was third in the state last year and will play at Gonzaga in the fall. “I was so far behind today. She hits it close, she putts it in – her game is really solid.”
The top Maui Interscholastic League finisher was Baldwin’s Marissa Uradomo, who played in the final group with Min and Galdiano and took 10th after an 82 gave her a 157 total. Uradomo, the 2012 MIL champion, is headed to Indiana State next year. The Bears’ Kimberlie Miyamoto tied for 18th.
Baldwin moved from fifth to fourth in the team standings, while Maui High finished sixth.
This year’s MIL champion, Maui High’s Kristeena Locke (82), finished 35th at 170.
“Playing with other players, it makes you realize how much harder I have to work to be just as good as everybody else,” Locke said.
* Robert Collias is at firstname.lastname@example.org