Getting back into the swing of things

Despite losing one of the country’s best female golfers to graduation, the Diamond Bar High School girls golf team remains optimistic about the chances of taking the CIF champion title once more.

Coach Tony McCabe is trying to prepare the team post Kailie Vongsaga, who was ranked 839th out of all female amateur golfers around the world. The coach is counting on filling the gap with a group of returning members, including senior captains Angelica Kusnowo and Esther Lee, and juniors Emma Han, Michelle Chang and Alicia Kuo. Also in the lineup of returning members is Vongsaga’s sister junior Katelyn Vongsaga.

We cannot replace Kailie Vongsaga, but the girls have been working hard since last season,” McCabe said. “If everyone gets better, then they can be better as a team, and that is exactly what happened.”

Kuo said that the team is determined to maintain a positive mindset and overcome any obstacle this season throws at them. The athletes have been practicing their swings individually throughout the summer and are prepared for the upcoming season.

“I think our team will go far this season and hopefully come out on top at state. Our players are all very strong and competitive this year, so it’s looking like a good lineup,” Kusnowo said.

The Lady Brahmas will play one more season as a freelance team. The Mt. Baldy League does not include girls golf as a sport for both varsity and JV, so the team scheduled its own matches. This means that the golf team is unable to compete with other schools as part of the Mt. Baldy League, but the team can compete against other schools during CIF.

Before DBHS’ sports teams change leagues next year, McCabe is training the JV team to compete against Walnut High School’s JV team.

“Walnut has a really good girls golf team, and in the 2021 season, our team will finally have a JV league, so we have to prepare to play Walnut,” McCabe said.

The Lady Brahmas’ first match last Thursday was a close loss against Troy High School, 191-197.

The team played  in the Chappy Wheeler Girls Golf Invitational match at Palm Desert last weekend, finishing the match with a victory in 112 degrees weather.

Senior captain Iris Liu had shot a career low 3 under par 69 on the first day leading the team. Although top teams from Arizona and northern California closed the gap the following day, Liu, Kusnowo and Lee helped secure the Lady Brahmas for another Chappy Wheeler tournament championship.

The team’s next match will be at Upland Hills Country Club tomorrow.