BAKERSFIELD -- The Orange Coast College men's golf team has punched its ticket to the State Finals following an impressing performance at the Southern California Regional Tournament, played on Monday at the Bakersfield Country Club.
Coast finished third overall during the two-round Regional, carding a team score of 761 and will be joining College of the Canyons (747), Cypress (758) and Riverside City College (774) as the four Southern California teams which will compete at the upcoming California Community College Athletic Association Men's Golf State Championships, set for Monday at Sandpiper Country Club, beginning at 7:30 a.m.
Leading the way for the Pirates was the OEC Co-Player of the Year, Myoung Kim, who shot a 4-over-par 76 in the opening round of the 36-hole regional and followed that up with a 3-under 69 for a two-round total of 145. Kim's score was just two strokes off of the Regional lead, which was carded by Canyons' Jones Comeford (74-69-143).
The depth of the Pirates once again carried them through this field of some of the top teams in the state, with all four remaining scoring golfers within three shots of each other. Chris Casey performed well at the No. 4 slot and carded a two-round total of 152 (74-78), followed by Taka Inoue (76-78-154), Connor O'Hern (80-75-155) and Bryson Bentley (76-79-155). In the No. 6 slot, Mike Stephens also performed well with a 165 (81-84).
OCC was sitting in the fourth and final position after Round 1 after shooting a team score of 382, but bounced back in the afternoon session with a 379, the second-lowest total in all of Round 2.
Winners of seven of the past nine Orange Empire Conference titles (including this year), the Pirates return to the State Championships for the fourth time since 2010. Coast finished fourth in the state in 2016 and in 2010, Coast finished fifth in the state. In 2013, the Pirates finished runner-up in the state, its highest finish since willing the title back in 1958.