Bridget Chantharath places at CIF State


Photo provided by @twolvesathletics

PATH TO SUCCESS: Freshman Bridget Chantharath demonstrates her form as she practices her swing.

Parashar Bharadwaj, Staff Writer

Excellence is par for the course for freshman Bridget Chantharath, who recently earned fourth place in the CIF State Championship at the Poppy Hills golf course in Pebble Beach. 

Shooting one under the total par of 71, Chantharath broke new grounds for Northwood athletics, becoming the first student to qualify for state in Northwood golf history.

“In high school golf, the State Championships is the final level of CIF,” Chantharath said. “To be the first golfer from Northwood to make it this far is such an honor, and I am extremely proud of the way I played this season.” 

Considering the volatility of golf, specifically with unpredictable weather conditions and course layouts, Chantharath stayed the course at Poppy Hills. 

“Poppy Hills is a tough golf course because the greens have a lot of slope, so a miss on the wrong side could potentially cause big numbers. It was also foggy during play, and fairways were pretty narrow,” Chantharath said. “I’m so proud to be the only freshman to shoot under par at the difficult course Poppy Hills, which is one of the premier golf courses that professionals play.”

And it looks like Chantharath already has the mentality of a professional. As the sport is solely dependent on individual play, one’s success has to do with what’s between their ears. As evident from her recent results, Chantharath possesses the mindset to achieve her ambitious goals. 

“She’s so gritty. She’s so mentally good, and that is so uncommon even with people 10 to 15 years older than she is,” golf head coach Zach Halop said. “She also has an extraordinary work ethic. She’s always working on her game.”

As well as the individual strength of Chantharath, much of her successful performance can be attributed in part due to the supportive and uplifting team environment Northwood girls golf has established. 

As runner-ups at CIF after winning the league title, the girls golf team provides strong moral support for each other during the season. 

“The girls golf team has been so supportive, and they send me encouraging messages before every round,” Chantharath said. “Golf has played such a big role in my life, and I have met many of my close friends through this sport.”

But of course, golf is an individual sport by design, and with Chantharath’s strong game, she will likely only continue to get better as time goes on.  

“For her, the sky’s the limit because she’s got the tools,” Halop said. “Now it’s just about her learning how to use those tools in the different areas of where she plays the game. Once she starts getting experience and learning courses, she’ll get better and better.”

Chantharath will be an important contributor to Northwood athletics throughout her next three years at the school. With her positive attitude, strong work ethic and passion for her craft, Chantharath has a promising future. 

“I’ve had the chance to be around Olympic athletes, to be around professional athletes; she’s got all of it,” Halop said. “And the best part is that she still loves the game. She loves the game, and because of that she works at it. And because of that she’s successful at it. “