White River golf looks strong with plenty of top talent returning

Both teams are coming back with experienced talent and plenty of competition.

As White River High golfers tee off for another season, one things is very clear: there’s talent at the top and the type of depth needed to assure success.

Hopes are running high on the links as the Hornet programs return with league champions heading the boys’ and girls’ programs, with all-league talent just a step behind.


The White River High boys’ golf team, which looks to be mighty competitive again this season, tees off today (Wednesday) to begin the fall 2021 campaign.

Veteran coach Terry Vallala has the luxury of counting on the top golfer in the South Puget Sound League 2A. Zach Miller, entering his junior season, has already claimed two league Most Valuable Player awards. During last season’s abbreviated schedule he finished 5-under par to capture the league tournament title.

Also heading Vallala’s roster are Kaden Ausen and Lane Maras, a formidable duo who joined Miller on last season’s all-league, first team list. Other returning varsity starters include AJ Mills, Jayson Walker, Arthur Mijares and Alex Wakefield. “These athletes probably have improved the most from last year,” the coach commented.

In gunning for another SPSL 2A title, Vallala sees Enumclaw and Fife as the top challengers. “We need to play with a lot of heart and make good decisions on every shot,” he said.

The squad opens play today by taking on Franklin Pierce High at Spanaway Lake Golf Club.


Coach Anna Rose can claim the desired double-double as she leads the Hornets girls into a new season: not only are there plenty of returning players, but those returnees have experienced success.

After leading her team to a league title a season ago, Rose has two seniors who have shined in the South Puget Sound League 2A spotlight. Brooke Mahler was voted the SPSL 2A Most Valuable Player and finished second in the league’s postseason tournament, while Brooke Gelinas won the league tourney and was a first team, all-league selection.

That’s an impressive beginning, but far from all the weapons Rose has at her disposal. Senior Emily Moser was a second team, all-league pick and placed 14th in the league tournament. And there are a trio of sophomores back in the fold: Abby Rose and Alle Klemkow were second team all-leaguers who placed 15th and 20th, respectively, in the end-of-year league tournament. Sophie Ross placed eighth in the tournament and received honorable mention when coaches picked their all-league squads.

Rose also has welcomed freshman Lexie Mahler. The younger sister of Brooke Mahler, the freshman is “a player to watch,” according to the coach.

With a well-stocked roster filled with experience and talent, Ross is looking forward to continued success. She will see her squad in action for the first time when the Hornets take to the road today (Wednesday) to challenge the Franklin Pierce Cardinals.

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