With as much experience as Greg Copeland has returning, the 14th-year Linfield men’s golf coach knows the 2014-15 competition season is a year that could see the Wildcats vault back to the top of the Northwest Conference.
Linfield, which won four titles in the span of five seasons between 2008 and 2012, finished a disappointing fifth in the conference last spring. Inconsistent play from match to match was the primary reason for the Wildcats’ slide.
The humbling outcome served as strong motivation during the summer months for a seasoned group of six senior lettermen that form the nucleus of one of the deepest groups in program history.
Copeland likes what he has seen during early season practices.
“I’m very excited. I believe we have the potential (to win the conference),” he said. “The league is going to be very tough from top to bottom. We won’t be able to have just 1-2 of our players score well. To reach our goals, we have to have all five guys play well.”
Led by seniors Taylor Klopp, Kevin Kawasaki, Logan Munson, and Taylor Pirnke, the ‘Cats have four bankable performers.
If he returns to previous form, fellow senior Kyle Hargrave could also be a factor. Second-year players Nathan Pellatz and Sam McClain are also fighting for spots on the team. Newcomers Logan Davis, Lucas Balala and Max Hanson each bring fresh promise to the program.
“The seniors really worked hard in the offseason on their swings. They are playing with great confidence. Their leadership and experience is rubbing off on the younger players and is going to help carry the day.”