Villa shoots tourney’s best round to win Channel title

Vanesa Villa led from wire-to-wire to capture the Channel League individual golf championship at Soule Park in Ojai on Thursday.

Villa followed her first-round 82 with a tourney-best 76 on Thursday for a 36-hole total of 158. She finished 12 shots ahead of runner-up and teammate Emily Fox (87-83—170).

“She finished really strong today,” DP coach Rob Schiff said of Villa’s performance.

Villa, a junior, shot 1-over par on the front nine and 5-over on the back. She had four birdies in her round.

This is her second straight year of advancing to the CIF Individual Regionals. Last year she qualified by finishing third in the league final, and made it all the way to the CIF Finals.

“She’s been playing a long time,” Schiff said of Villa’s tournament experience. “She’s very experienced and very composed. That always helps.”

Schiff said Villa was frustrated she didn’t play better in the first round, “but at the same time she had a five-shot lead because really nobody else played better. She was relaxed today.”

Joining Villa and Fox at the CIF Regionals will be DP teammate Bekah Beveridge, who earned the sixth spot with a 191 (97-94). The top six scorers qualified for the CIF Regional Individual Tournament at Las Posas CC in Camarillo on Nov. 1.

Three Santa Barbara High players garnered the other CIF berths. They were Haley True (third with a 92-83—175), Sarah Kirkwood (fourth, 94-91—185) and Saralisa Ortega (fifth, 98-89—187).

Santa Barbara and Dos Pueblos tied for the team championship. They return to Soule Park on Wednesday for the CIF team regional.