I totally agree with that... although I have to say I also have caught myself with a low scoring beer that medaled and feeling like I didn't "earn it".
I was pleasantly surprised to get scoresheets from Seattle yesterday. My stout scored a 36.5 and DIDN'T advance, but in a 35 entry category that's not too surprising. I'll need to look if it even went to mini-BOS but I don't think it did. Solid scores for my IPA and CDA but not spectacular (28 for both) and my Cal Common didn't do well at all... too much age on it by the time it got there. Oh well.
I don't put too much stock in scores, unless it's something obvious. Last year, I sent cider entries (same batch, bottled at the same time) to 2 separate comps, judging on the same day. It won a gold in one comp (high 30's iirc) and a 23 in the other. And the 42 I reference above was for a recent comp that didn't medal. I guess there could have been 3 other entries higher than a 42, but it did go to a mini-BOS.
That's actually what happened to me with the one that felt undeserved, although it was actually the same beer in two categories of the same comp. A local comp here has a few custom categories, one of which was New Brewer. Last year was the only year I would have qualified (req was less than one year brewing) so I entered my beers in the New Brewer cat. However, the custom categories would not have advanced to BOS and it would have been a hodgepodge of styles, so I entered the same beers in their standard categories to get feedback.
My American Amber ended up scoring pretty well, like 35 points in the American Ales category but didn't medal, not surprising since that's a huge category, then it scored much lower, in the area of 26 points in the "New Brewer" category and ended up getting a medal as 3rd Place New Brewer. Even though it had scored higher in it's correct category, the new brewer one felt like a *pat on the shoulder, awww thanks for trying* kinda thing. I know that wasn't the intent at all, it was just hard for me not to think of it that way. It was also my first medal ever, and I wanted to feel like I had "earned" it.
It can be hard not to look at those scoring categories and see the difference between Good, Very Good and Excellent.