Led by a pair of elite golfers, the Pacers are loaded with plenty of potential

by: VERN UYETAKE - Jake Reiff finished in a tie for second at the state tournament last year and should be in the hunt for the individual crown again this season.Lakeridge's boys golf team features a pair of elite players this season and is bolstered by a strong and promising class of youngsters.

The Pacers had nine freshmen try out for this year's team with two of them making varsity. Aside from the top tow spots, it's an open competition to crack the top-five every week and Lakeridge hopes this will help the team improve and make a run at a berth at state this year.

Lakeridge is led by Jake Reiff, who finished tied for second individually last year. Reiff hopes to contend for both the district and state title in his junior year.

“He's been really dialed in and wants to see if he can put himself in a position to win it,” said Boomer Reiff, who takes over as head coach this year.

“I've been around the game forever and just love it, especially getting kids excited about it,” Reiff said.

Cade Lawson is close behind as Lakeridge's No. 2 golfer and helps give the Pacers a solid 1-2 punch at the top of its line-up.

Lakeridge also returns an experienced varsity golfer in Vincent Chia who provides some consistency.

Drake Freeman, Asher Nelson and John Grace will also figure into the team's varsity roster along with freshmen Jack Dickinson and Timothy Lee.

“There's really a lot of potential on this team which is exciting,” Reiff said.

The team figures to be extremely competitive in one of the most difficult leagues in the state, featuring defending champion Lake Oswego.

But the Pacers hope to be in the mix for the No. 2 spot along with West Linn.

“That's one of our top goals this year and I think we really have a good opportunity to do it,” Reiff said.

To achieve that goal, Lakeridge has been focusing heavily on its short game and improving its overall consistency.

“We're working on finishing each hole well and keeping our putts to a minimum,” Reiff said.

Along with Boomer Reiff, new assistant coaches Tyler Elliott, a Lakeridge graduate, and Mike Lawson have been helping out with the Pacers this year.

Lakeridge will compete at Rose City in Portland Monday and will play in an invitational in Salem later on.

Districts will be held at two courses in two days this year, beginning at Arrowhead and ending at Stone Creek and state will be held at Quail Valley in Banks.

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