Xavier seizes crown

Xavier seizes crown


Xavier seizes crown


The competition between Phoenix Xavier Prep and Chandler Hamilton couldn’t get much tighter in this year’s Division I state girls golf tournament.

The teams ended Day 1 in a dead heat and remained tied through the first nine holes Saturday at Aguila Municipal Golf Course in Phoenix.

But as they made the turn, Xavier’s Hannah O’Sullivan, a mild-mannered, soft-spoken 14-year-old with a careful approach and a near-perfect putting game, changed everything.

O’Sullivan birdied holes 9 through 12 on her way to a stunning individual victory of 12-under 132. Her performance broke both the one- and two-day state tournament records and helped Xavier defend its team title, defeating Hamilton 574-583.

“She definitely had the potential,” Xavier coach Lynn Winsor said. “And, boy, did she turn it on on the right day.”

Overall, O’Sullivan birdied nine holes Saturday. Her only bogey came on the final hole. Despite her unshakable performance, she said she was quite nervous throughout the second round and especially on the final hole where a large group had gathered to the finish.

“My hands were shaking so much on the last hole. It was difficult,” O’Sullivan said. “I just tried to focus on my game.”

Xavier’s team title was the 30th in school history. All have been won under Winsor, who began coaching the girls golf team in 1973. Winsor shares the reins with Tui Selvaratnam, in her seventh year as co-head coach. Selvaratnam said she couldn’t have been more pleased with the way her young team played.

“They all did their part and performed,” she said. “It’s unbelievable.”

Hamilton coach Oswaldo Perez had a similar feeling watching his squad. Seniors Saki Iida and Mikayla Harmon both finished Saturday at 2 under.

“It would have been something else if we hadn’t given it our all, but we did and we just got beat by a better team,” he said.

Hamilton made up most of the top five, led by Iida in second place with a two-day total of 4-under 140.

Harmon was third with a 1-under 143 and Yesong Kim finished in fourth with a par 144.

Phoenix Pinnacle placed third, 24 shots behind Hamilton at 607.


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