Sea Pines Golf Resort in Los Osos has been something of a home away from home for Matthew Hansen.
It’s only fitting, then, that Hansen, a Morro Bay High senior, will sign his National Letter of Intent to play collegiate golf at UC Davis at Sea Pines when the NCAA’s early signing period starts Nov. 11. Hansen, a Los Osos native, also had his senior portrait taken at the course.
“It’s home,” said Sea Pines owner Gary Setting, the 2006 Southern California Golf Professional of the Year. “We’re all really honored to have Matt.”
Hansen verbally committed to the Aggies last winter and will attend the school on an 80-percent scholarship, he said.
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UC Davis, which jumped from Division II to Division I in 2004, won the Big West Conference championship last season en route to qualifying for an NCAA West Regional appearance.
“They’re a rising golf team,” Hansen said. Key in the decision, Hansen said, was his comfort level with 16th-year Aggies coach Cy Williams. “Just the way he ran practice, it was strict but also loose and always positive.”
Other schools that showed early interest last year included Cal Poly, Pacific, San Francisco and Santa Clara, Hansen said. He added that Cal Poly was his second choice, but he felt that taking advantage of the opportunity to practice and play at new, unfamiliar courses in northern California could help diversify and expand his game.
Hansen will enter UC Davis with an undeclared major, he said, but is considering exercise biology or managerial economics.
“UC Davis is going to be a great fit for him,” said Setting, who has mentored Hansen since he was a pre-teen, along with swing coach Don Parsons.
“Physically, when most young players start out, they’re all about the same,” Setting said. “Mentally, Matt had the composure and patience to take on the game of golf, and his skill level has progressed dramatically over the years.”
Hansen, presently GolfWeek.com’s 43rd-ranked high school boys golfer in his class nationally, played at the U.S. Amateur Championship in August, shooting a 17-over-par 157 for the tournament, missing the cut for match play by nine strokes. Setting was his caddy.
Hansen said he’d still like to improve his short game and mental consistency after the occasional bad shot.“With the game of golf, certain doors have to open and you have to walk through them,” Setting said. “And he was able to experience that (with the U.S. Amateur Championship).“He could be a professional some day if the right doors open.”
CIF-SOUTHERN SECTION RANKINGSFootball: Arroyo Grande (7-1) stayed at No. 5 in Monday’s Northern Division poll after topping Paso Robles 26-10, while Atascadero (6-2) remained No. 9 after defeating Lompoc 49-35.
In the Northwest Division, Templeton (6-2) jumped a spot to No. 8 after routing Cabrillo 41-14, and Nipomo (5-3) also rose one slot, checking in at No. 9 after crushing Santa Ynez 36-8.
Girls volleyball: Arroyo Grande (17-2), which hasn’t lost a PAC 7 league match since 2005, stayed at No. 7 for the second week in a row in Division I-A.
Cross country: There were no changes in Division IV, where Morro Bay’s boys squad stayed put at No. 2, and on the girls side, Morro Bay was seventh, followed by Templeton at eighth.
Boys water polo: Arroyo Grande (17-10), which went 2-3 at the prestigious Servite Tournament in Anaheim last week, stayed at No. 8 in Division IV.
Girls tennis: San Luis Obispo (15-1), which hasn’t lost a PAC 7 match since 2004, dropped a spot to No. 7 in Division III.
GIRLS VOLLEYBALLThe Shandon High girls volleyball team (10-2) improved to 7-1 in the Coast Valley League with a 3-1 win over Coastal Christian (4-4 CVL).
Kelly Rendon had 11 kills and six aces for the Outlaws, and teammate Ashley DeBreuler dished out 20 assists as Shandon won 25-15, 25-21, 18-25, 25-21.
The Conquerors were led by Grace Napier, who had 21 digs and eight kills.