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CV star wraps up career
Janita Vongphoumy had a memorable two-year career with Central Valleys varsity girls golf program. - photo by Courier file photo

Senior Janita Vongphoumy and Central Valley High School varsity girls golf head coach Kelly Wheelock departed for the Sac-Joaquin Section Masters Tournament at 6:15 a.m.

The 40-minute drive from Ceres to Stockton took over two hours due to rain and traffic delays.

Vongphoumy and Wheelock couldn't believe their incredibly bad luck.

"We were laughing about it," Wheelock said. "The way she approaches the game now is different. Last year, she would have freaked out."

Vongphoumy opened with a bogey on the third hole and ended up shooting a 13-over-par 85 on her way to finishing in the top 10 in the individual standings at the 108-person Masters tourney, staged in the rain and wind on Nov. 2 at the Reserve at Spanos Park.

"She had a really good time," Wheelock said.

Janita arrived five minutes before tee time at 8:30 a.m.
She didn't get a chance to warm up.

Vongphoumy usually hits 50-60 balls on the driving range.

"Obviously, she didn't shoot her best round," Wheelock said. "I'm sure she would have done better if she warmed up. It does make a difference. But she didn't make any excuses."

Vongphoumy was part of a playing trio featuring Beah Cruz of Christian Brothers and Venture Academy's Jessica Dzoan.

Cruz, East Union's Brooke Riley (71), Placer's Natalie Pietromonaco (75) and Lincoln of Stockton's Madeline Zunino (75) were awarded individual berths to NorCals.

Riley, who signed a national letter of intent with Division-I Northwestern, was the low medalist.

"The conditions were bad," Wheelock said. "It was pretty crazy. They were thinking about postponing it. The way some of the girls shot was phenomenal. The competition is no joke."

Vongphoumy competed for the final time as a member of Central Valley's varsity girls golf program earlier this month.

She'll be remembered as the Hawks' all-time greatest player.

Janita was named Western Athletic Conference MVP twice during her two-year career with Central Valley.

The two-time Sac-Joaquin Section Masters Tournament qualifier placed first at the Division-IV Championships this season.

"It's pretty impressive with what she did," Wheelock said.