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Cal hits wall at Lamkin San Diego Classic

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MARCH 10, 2023

After having to qualify in tough Bay Area conditions last week, the Bears suffered a disappointing result at the Lamkin San Diego Classic. The Bears finished in eighth place out of 15 teams, failing to build on their recent success in Arizona and Hawaii.

The Lamkin featured some of the top teams in the country, including No. 20 Colorado State and No. 30 San Diego State. The tournament win was claimed by New Mexico State, which edged out the hosts San Diego State by one stroke. Cal was expected to be among the contenders for the win but ultimately struggled to find its rhythm in the tournament.

“We didn’t have our best. We weren’t very sharp,” said head coach Walter Chun. But I give the guys credit — I felt like they really tried to battle hard. (The) course was tough, (the) greens were really fast and if you didn’t get a chance to practice or play much, the course is going to expose any kind of rust.”

The individual title was claimed by Washington senior Petr Hruby, who finished four strokes ahead of San Diego State’s Justin Hastings and New Mexico’s Bastien Amat. The highest individual finish for Cal came from sophomore Simon Kwon who finished 11th, just one stroke off of a four-way tie for seventh.

With a final score of four under, Kwon was the only player from Cal to finish under par. This was Kwon’s first appearance in the team lineup this spring — he earned the spot after an impressive outing in Hawaii while playing as an individual.

“Simon posted three consecutive under-par rounds, made a handful of birdies. Simon’s put in a lot of work ever since school started back in the fall. He’s faced some adversity here and there, but he’s battled through the low points in his golf game,” Chun said. “He looks at it as a glass half full and that attitude finally paid off for him to play well and I think his confidence is only going to grow. It was really impressive from start to finish.”

The team struggled across the rest of the board, shooting a combined 879, 35 strokes behind winner New Mexico. Cal’s performance was mired with inconsistency, as many players badly faded in the closing stages of their rounds.

Sampson Zheng, who was fresh off a win at the John Burns Intercollegiate last month, produced solid golf across the three rounds. While the numbers show him going over-par by a stroke and ending in a tie for 22nd place, the junior started his first two rounds under par before he shot a 74 in the final round.

Costas Panay finished in a tie for 60th. The redshirt junior displayed a promising first round, shooting a 73. However, his game would unravel after late missteps in the second and third rounds left his scorecard at nine over on the final day.

Tony Chen finished alongside Panay in the tie for 60th. Inconsistency across his first round left him with a two-over start. He scored the same in the second until a huge triple-bogey early in the third derailed the final day.

Ethan Chung, who placed second among individuals at the John Burns, had a rough tournament in San Diego. The redshirt sophomore got off to a decent start, shooting two over in the second round before it fell apart during the closing holes. Chung ended with 82 in round three, shooting 17 over par in total.

The sole individual for the Bears, Jeewon Park, got off to an incredible start, shooting one under in round one. However, his success also failed to last — Park shot three and four in the final two rounds to tie for 42nd place.

This was not the outcome the Bears wanted from their trip to San Diego, and it will serve as a wakeup call for a Cal team that showed encouraging signs at the beginning of the spring season. With another gloomy forecast set to hang over the Bay Area this week, there will be more obstacles to overcome before their next tournament.

The Bears will next participate in The Goodwin, hosted by No. 7 Stanford, on March 30.

Contact Emmanuel Macedo at 


MARCH 10, 2023