Pope to lead CV golf

GLENDALE — Lee Pope never lost hope.

Having spent the past 11 seasons coaching at all of the different levels of the Crescenta Valley High football program and the past two seasons as the junior varsity boys' golf squad, Pope wanted to see if his body of work could lead to a head coaching position at his alma mater.

It did.

Pope was named the Crescenta Valley girls' golf coach June 24. He succeeds Ken Johnson, who resigned in June after eight seasons so he can attend his daughter's soccer matches this fall at New Mexico Highlands University.

"I'm so excited to be the new coach and I can't wait to get started," said Pope, who graduated from Crescenta Valley in 1977. "It will be my first head-coaching experience at the high school level.

"I love golf and I have an opportunity to get out there and take over the reins from Ken. I know that we will have a good team with some good returners and some incoming freshmen."

Crescenta Valley will look to win its first Pacific League championship since 2007. The Falcons finished 12-14-2 and 12-13 in league for fourth place last season.

They lost standout Katie Park to graduation, but Pope said the Falcons can make strides to rise in league in the fall. Pope said he will conduct a two-day tryout session Aug. 16-17 at Brookside Golf Course No. 2 in Pasadena in the Falcons' quest to have balance and depth at all levels.

"Golf is a more individualized sport," Pope said. "I'm just looking forward to motivating the girls and keeping a positive attitude.

"Ken ran a solid program and I now want to keep it going. I want to take the program to the highest level possible."

Peter Kim, the school's girls' athletic director, said Pope was brought on board for several reasons.

"He's got a familiarity with the school, athletic department and the community as a whole," Kim said. "He's got experience working with high school athletes.

"He also has golfing experience and all the pieces seemed to fit right. He's extremely organized and detail oriented."

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