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Local athletes honored at No. Santa Barbara County Athletic Round Table

On a warm Monday afternoon, local athletes were able to take a break from the heat during a lunchtime gathering of the Northern Santa Barbara County Athletic Round Table.

Held at its usual host location, Giavanni’s Pizza in Orcutt, the luncheon featured top athletes from boys golf, track and field, softball and boys volleyball.

Filling in for regular host Charles Sommer, Santa Maria Time sports editor Elliot Stern announced the two athletes of the week.

Earning the male athlete of the week award was Justin Buenaventura of Cabrillo golf. The senior fired a 73 last week at Monarch Dunes Golf Course to capture medalist honors during the final Los Padres League tournament of season.

It was just the latest victory for Buenaventura, who has earned the medalist honors at every single league tournament this year.

“It’s definitely a surprise,” said Buenaventura. “I didn’t think my level of play was going to get this high and it was going to single me out. I just put the work in and it came to me.”

Buenaventura credits hard work away from the golf course as a key reason for his success.

“My physical swing has been pretty good, but mentally is what I’ve been working on,” Buenaventura said. ‘I can keep myself in to a tournament, even when it’s going bad, which is a good accomplishment for me. I’ve just been reading countless books and studying what really goes on in the mind.”

This is the first Round Table award for Buenaventura during his high school career.

The female athlete of the week is Myranda Morales of Allan Hancock College softball.

Morales, who was not in attendance, was honored after helping lead the Bulldogs to a pair of wins over Moorkpark, which allowed Hancock to clinch a share of the Western State Conference North Division.

The freshman infielder from Pioneer Valley drove in the game winning run in the first game of the doubleheader. She later added two hits and two RBI in the conference-clinching second game.

It’s the third time in four years the Bulldogs have earned the conference title.

The Bulldogs shared the conference championship with Ventura, but earned the top seed for the postseason thanks to a series win over Pirates earlier in the season.

Hancock will face-off with Fullerton on Tuesday during the play-in round of the Southern California Regionals.

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