Sarah Archuleta wins medalist honors as the West Linn girls place four individuals in the top five at districts

by: VERN UYETAKE - Sarah Archuleta hits a putt during her second-round 71 which propelled her to victory at Stone Creek.If the West Linn girls golf team can string together two days similar to the ones it had at districts this Monday and Tuesday, it could find itself on top of the podium once again next week.

The Lions were in peak form in ideal playing conditions at Stone Creek in Oregon City this week.

While winning the district tournament was virtually a formality, West Linn was workmanlike in its effort, winning by more than 100 strokes and posting some of its best scores of the year.

Sarah Archuleta would lead the way for the Lions, posting rounds of 73 and 71 to finish even par for the tournament, taking home the district title.

Archuleta trailed her teammate, Kristin Elich by two strokes heading into Tuesday. Elich was the lone score under par on Monday with a tremendous round to help get West Linn off to a strong start.

Archuleta entered Tuesday on a mission and was eyeing a round under par as she teed off.

“I was thinking about 71. That's the number (teammate) Chloe Barnes said I needed to shoot,” Archuleta said.

Archuleta was steady on the front nine and her putter caught fire on the back as she quickly made up ground and vaulted past Elich and Canby's Krissy Peterson into the lead.

Archuleta also made some nice saves out of the sand on Tuesday and turned a deficit into a relatively comfortable win.

“I just had a different mindset today,” Archuleta said.

Elich was second for the Lions, following her 71 with a 79. Her sister, Amanda Elich was next with rounds of 76 and 82 while Kirbi Havemann shot an 89 and then a terrific round of 83 on Tuesday.

Kate Fillion played Monday's round for the Lions, also shooting an 89 while Chloe Barnes was West Linn's No. 5 golfer on Tuesday and shot a stellar 84.

Of the six golfers that played for West Linn at districts, three are freshmen.

“We were looking for our freshmen to really step up for us,” Archuleta said.

West Linn also had four of the top five individual scorers at the district tournament.

West Linn will now gear up for state at Quail Valley, where the Lions won state in 2010.

“That's been the goal all season long. I think this team still has so much potential that we haven't hit yet and Quail Valley sets up well for us. It's wide open and similar to a lot of courses we've played,” Archuleta said.

For the boys, West Linn qualified one individual for state. CJ Sitton posted the Lions' low score for the tournament, following a round of 80 with a 73 on Tuesday.

Hayden Coppedge narrowly missed a berth at state with rounds of 79 and 77.

Brett Bushnell was next, shooting 79 and 82. Charlie Moore posted an 83 and 81 and Ryan Kelley shot 85 and 83.

The boys state golf tournament will be at Trysting Tree in Corvallis.

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