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Lady Hawks begin new chapter as members of the CCC
Central Valley’s varsity girls golf program returns several key players from last year’s team, including Amelia Daoheung (left) and Esmeralda Lopez. - photo by Dale Butler

Central Valley’s varsity girls golf program reached new heights during its final season in the Western Athletic Conference.

The Hawks will begin a new chapter this fall as members of the Central California Conference.

Central Valley was moved from the WAC to the CCC as part of the Sac-Joaquin Section’s league realignment plan.

“I don’t mind the move.. It’s going to be good for the girls."
Coach Kelly Wheelock

“I don’t mind the move,” Hawks’ head coach Kelly Wheelock said. “It’s going to be good for the girls. They’ll get to play different teams.”

Central Valley’s roster consists of 12 players: Amelia Daoheung (So.), Esmeralda Lopez (Jr.), Fernanda Mercado (Jr.), Alondra Bustamante (Jr.), Sylvia Villegas (Sr.), Katherine Nou (Jr.), Olivia Pulio (Jr.), Kiara Alvarez (Jr.), Alexandria Barnes (So.), Olivia Gil (So.), Sayra Rodrigues (So.) and Payton Dickson (Fr.)

Daoheung, Lopez, Mercado, Bustamante and Villegas are returners.

Amelia made a name for herself with the Hawks during her freshman year.

She shot a 103 en route to a 14th-place showing at the Sac-Joaquin Section Division-IV Championships.

She finished fourth (100) at the WAC Year-End Tournament.

Daoheung earned first-team all-league accolades.

She was the fifth-best player in the WAC’s individual standings.

Amelia had a slope and rating average of 12.539.

“She’ll be one of the better golfers in the CCC,” Wheelock said. “She’s got the right attitude and mindset. She spent a lot of time working on her game during the summer.”

Esmeralda gained valuable experience while starting as a sophomore.

She shot a 135 at the WAC Championships.

“It was her first year,” Wheelock said. “She was consistent. She was one of our better golfers.”

Katherine competed for the Hawks her freshman year.

She shot a 157 at the 2017 WAC Year-End Tournament.

“There’s a bright side having her back,” Wheelock said. “She’s going to help a lot. I’m excited.”

Central Valley posted a team score of 659 while finishing in a program-best third place at the 2017 Western Athletic Conference Year-End Tournament.

The Hawks also took third during the conference dual season (6-4).

Central Valley snapped a 12-matching losing streak versus Ceres High dating back to the 2011 season.

The Hawks also sent a program-record three players to the Sac-Joaquin Section Division-IV Championships.

“Moving to the new league will challenge the whole team,” Wheelock said. “I definitely expect us to be competitive even though the league is bigger. We’re going to surprise some people.”

The revamped CCC consists of Central Valley, Patterson, Merced, Golden Valley, Buhach Colony, Atwater and El Capitan.

“I’d be happy if we finished in the middle of the pack,” Wheelock said. “If the girls put in the work, we can be in the top tier in the league.”