ROSEVILLE -- Will Brueckner's goal at the start of the high school golf season was clear. He wanted to play in the CIF state championship tournament for the first time.
That's all he had in mind at the start of the NCGA/CIF Championships on May 19. But after he moved to 4-under par through 12 holes at Sierra View Country Club, that goal changed.
"At that point I said, 'Let's win this thing,'" Brueckner said.
Brueckner finished the round by making two more birdies to finish with a 6-under 66 and capture the Northern California title by two strokes over De La Salle's Josh McCarthy.
Brueckner -- who started his round on the 10th hole -- was 3-under after his first nine holes, then birdied hole nos. 3, 8 and 9 to finish the round. He was 3-under on the par 3s at Sierra View, chipping in for birdie on hole nos. 8, 12 and 17.
"I thought another 67 would win," Brueckner said. "The course was playing pretty hard."
Campolindo's Jim Coon shot a 73 to also qualify as an individual, and the Cougars finished fifth with a team score of 387. The top three teams and the top nine individuals not on those teams advance to the state championships June 4 at San Gabriel Country Club.
It's the third straight week Brueckner had shot a round in the 60s.
He had the low score at the North Coast Section Division I qualifier on May 5, shooting a 67 at Diablo Creek in Concord. A week later, he shot another 67, this time in the NCS Tournament of Champions at Peacock Gap Country Club in San Rafael. He finished one stroke back of Branson's Miguel Delgado.
"The putter's been rolling," Brueckner said.
"I've been making a lot of putts, and I hit the driver really well today."
It's the second straight year an East Bay golfer has won the Northern California title, after Foothill's Ryan Maund was medalist last year.
Foothill had five golfers shoot 79 or better to finish with a team score of 380 for its second Northern California title in three years and its fourth overall.
Jacob Solomon led Diablo Foothill Athletic League champion Dublin with a 71, good enough for a tie for third overall.
Central Catholic-Modesto had a team score of 382 to finish second, two strokes ahead of Dublin.