DON KETCHUM is a native of Phoenix. He was a sportswriter for The Arizona Republic/The Phoenix Gazette for nearly four decades. He covered high school sports on several occasions as well as the Arizona Diamondbacks, Arizona Cardinals and Arizona State sports. From 2008-14, he was a staff writer for, the web site of the Arizona Interscholastic Association.

Saturday, September 6, 2014

Gators second in competitive Antigua Golf tourney

Xavier’s Gators aren’t used to looking up at some other team on top of the golf leaderboard, but that’s exactly what they had to do in the Antigua National High School Invitational on Friday (Sept. 5) and Saturday (Sept. 6) at the McCormick Ranch Golf Course in Scottsdale.
XCP was a step behind Torrey Pines (Calif.), near San Diego, most of the weekend, finishing second among 18 teams when all was said and done.
The Gators scored 604 over the two days on the par-72 course, while Torrey Pines was at 589.
Alisa Snyder was XCP’s top individual finisher, taking fifth place with a 147 (71-76). Emily Mahar rebounded after struggling in the opening round and finished in a tie for ninth at 152 (79-73).
Rounding out the slate for the Gators were Madison Kerley at 153 (75-78), Mikayla Fitzpatrick at 154 (75-59) and Elizabeth Caldarelli at 163 (77-86).
Lily Worden and Rebecca Redhorse also participated for XCP.

Xavier's golf team finished second in the Antigua National Invitational in Scottsdale. From left, sophomore Lily Worden, sophomore Emily Mahar, sophomore Elizabeth Caldarelli, senior Madison Kerley, senior Alisa Snyder, junior Mikayla Fitzpatrick and senior Rebecca Redhorse.

 “It was a good experience for the girls,’’ said XCP co-coach Tui Selvaratnam. “It was a good wake-up call for us. The girls know what they have to do over the next two months (before the state tournament), know exactly what they have to work on.
“The state tournament is 36 holes, just like this one. You learn that you have to play all the way to the end, give it all you’ve got.’’
In addition to XCP and Torrey Pines, the teams were Archbishop McCarthy (Southwest Ranches, Fla.), Spanish Springs (Sparks, Nev.), Texas High (Texarkana, Texas), Iolani (Honolulu, Hawaii), Faith Lutheran (Las Vegas, Nev.), Trinity Christian (Addison, Texas), Scottsdale Notre Dame Prep, Oro Valley Ironwood Ridge, Tempe Corona del Sol, Tucson Salpointe Catholic, Chandler Hamilton, Chandler Basha, Phoenix Desert Vista (Ahwatukee), Tucson Sahuaro, Chandler and Phoenix Pinnacle.
Kerley, Snyder and Mahar had played in this tournament before.
Kerley, a senior who finished second in the Division I state tournament last season, admitted she needs to pick up her game.
“I definitely would have liked to have played better. It was not my best,’’ she said.
“I have been struggling with ball-striking and it has thrown me off trying to get distance.
“This was good for us, helped us do some bonding. You realize you are on a team and it’s not just you like it is in the individual tournaments. You have to all play together.’’
The defending state champion Gators (31 overall titles) will have a busy week coming up.
They will face Phoenix Barry Goldwater and Phoenix North Canyon on Monday (Sept. 8) at Orange Tree Golf Course in North Phoenix, have a home match on Wednesday (Sept. 10) at Camelback Country Club against Scottsdale Desert Mountain and Phoenix Sandra Day O’Connor, and will travel to the Tucson area for the Nighthawk Invitational (hosted by Ironwood Ridge) at the Omni National Golf Resort on Friday (Sept. 12) and Saturday (Sept. 13).

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