In a practice session prior to the beginning of the season at Altadena Golf Course, Flintridge Prep boys' golf Coach Bob Loughrie played several holes with budding standout Jack Bouchard.
While going from hole to hole, Loughrie gained additional knowledge about the sport from Bouchard. Loughrie also liked the way Bouchard, a sophomore, remained composed when hitting the ball.
"He's a dream player," Loughrie said of Bouchard. "Every drive he hit, his trajectory was perfect.
"He explained things to me about drives and putts that you either didn't know or don't think about much. He's that much ahead of the game and he's dedicated."
Bouchard enjoyed quite a debut with the Rebels last season. He finished second in the Prep League's individual final at Brookside
Golf Course and qualified for the divisionals. He will look to become the first Rebel to capture a league championship since Hasan Doxey in 2007.
Loughrie, who has coached a cast of star Rebels' players that's included Jeff Osborn, Russell Surber and Brett Kanda, said Bouchard can further sharpen all areas of his game and make it to state.
"I think he learned a lot from last year and he's got a shot at winning league," Loughrie said. "He's much more powerful and savvy at this stage compared to last year.
"He's hitting the ball much farther. I would not be at all surprised if he makes it to state."
Joining Bouchard, a reigning All-Area pick, will be Will Guthrie, Justin Farshidi and Richard Lo.
St. Francis finished fifth in the Mission League last season after beginning it with high expectations. The Golden Knights will return a couple of players, including senior Richie Maloof and junior Austin Puertas, in their bid to move up in league.
Maloof said the Knights might be rebuilding.
"We need to find a way to pull together, and, hopefully we can do that by working hard," Maloof said. "We don't have the [depth] like we have in the past."
Renaissance Academy will compete in the Harbor League. The Wildcats didn't have enough players to field a team last season, but
Coach Niko Fontanilla said he's looking for that to change this season. Among those expected to participate are Troy Fontanilla,
Mitchell Kim, Ed Burrows and Nick Troplent.
"I want their scores to improve by 10 strokes by the end of the season," the elder Fontanilla said.