GOLETA, CA – The Cypress College men's golf team dominated the 36-hole CCCAA State Championship round on Monday at Sandpiper Golf Club, capturing the first team state title in program history. Sophomores Matthew Rafter, Georgios Bris, and Andrew Thomson, posted top-six scores, earning them All-State honors.
"Been a long time coming," said 19th year Head Coach Dana Bedard. "We've been building this program over the last few years to reach this point. We've come in second plenty of times and nobody seems to remember the second place team, so hopefully this team's accomplishments are appreciated in the long tradition of successes at Cypress College."
The Chargers, who finished second at last year's state championship to College of the Canyons, turned the tables this year. Cypress posted a team score of 736 (362-374) to easily get past College of the Canyons at 754 (381-373), while Orange Coast College (378-382) won a tiebreaker over Reedley College (380-380) when both teams finished the day with a team score of 760.
Bris posted a 3-under par first round, leading the Chargers to a remarkable 16-stroke lead after the morning round. "I was hoping we could get off to a fast start," said Bris. "I wanted to make a statement in the first 18. That was my motivation and I'm very happy I came in with a 69, followed by Matt's 70."
However, the Chargers were not satisfied with a first round lead. Coach Bedard is familiar with what can happen in the afternoon round. "I've been there before," said Bedard. "In 2010 we had an eleven stroke lead at the State Championships and finished third. We didn't take anything for granted in this match, but I was in awe at the unbelievable performance of our guys."
The afternoon winds created some concerns among the coaches, but Thomson posted an even-par 72 in the afternoon with Rafter adding a one-over par 73, pacing Cypress to victory.
The Chargers' first ever men's golf state title comes in the wake of Coach Bedard losing his father, Don Bedard, just days before the event. Former Cypress College President, Dr. Don Bedard, was known as 'Mr. Cypress College' because of his significant role in the colleges' growth. He was 91.
"My dad was my assistant coach in the early years," added Bedard. "He was an avid golfer and loved being around the kids. When I got to talk to him, I mentioned the state championships, but let him know I wanted to be there for him. He told me to go win it. Going into this, I honestly believed that he would play a part in our victory and he made a strong statement in the first 18 holes."
The 2018 CCCAA Men's Golf State Championship is the third state title of the 2017-18 season for the Chargers, the first team title of the year. It is the Chargers' 33rd CCCAA state title in school history.
(Release by Wes McCurtis, Cypress College Sports Information)
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