The student news site of La Salle Catholic College Preparatory.

The La Salle Falconer

The student news site of La Salle Catholic College Preparatory.

The La Salle Falconer

The student news site of La Salle Catholic College Preparatory.

The La Salle Falconer

Subscribe to our weekly newsletter!
* indicates required

Athlete of the Week: Dawson Stroud

John Pham
An important figure in golf for Stroud is his coach, Mr. Mark Mollenkopf.

Senior Dawson Stroud is beginning his final season with the La Salle golf team —  a sport he picked up during the pandemic four years ago. “It was a sport that I could easily do outside by myself without worrying about any disease,” he said. 

An important figure in golf for Stroud is his coach, Mark Mollenkopf. He and his teammates look up to their coach because “he’s an amazing figure, and we’re always really proud that we have him at our school,” he said. In addition to their coach, Stroud says recent graduate Will Koch was an inspiration to him. “[He] was a mentor for me, taught me most of what I know, gave me equipment … and he was a pivotal force that united the team,” he said. 

Having a senior role model like Koch has greatly affected how Stroud interacts with the underclassmen now that he’s a senior. “I don’t want them to look up to me just as an upperclassman or somebody older, but instead as a mentor, somebody who might poke fun at them but at the end of the day, has their back and is excited when they do well,” he said. 

Being a senior on the team also has its own perks. “There’s a little less stress because I know at the end of the year ultimately I’ll graduate … and our coach trusts us to practice on our own sometimes or to miss a practice if we need to for work or school,” he said. 

Stroud practices with the golf team five days a week for about three and a half hours. This leads up to competing against other schools in the Northwest Oregon Conference. “For most of my career, we’ve been pretty dominant and haven’t had much competition, but recently Wilsonville has gotten significantly better,” he said. For these competitions, the golf team misses a significant amount of school. “We normally miss about 13 days of school for spring,” he said. 

Another challenge for Stroud when playing golf is the individualism of the sport. “There can be a sense of loneliness when you’re out on the course by yourself and there’s nobody to talk to,” he said. 

Despite golf being an individual sport, Stroud says the team is well bonded. “We spend a lot of time together,” he said. “During the state competition we normally spend the night … and have some late nights where we talk about golf,” he said. 

In addition to golf, Stroud works at a local restaurant called Double Mountain. Managing school, work, and golf is something he has to take into account every day. “It can be a little stressful but as long as you manage it and prepare it’s okay,” he said. Outside of golf, school, and work, Stroud likes to juggle and climb trees. 

One of the best memories Stroud has had throughout his years of golf was last spring. Ms. Adriana Noesi, Director of Community and Student Leadership at La Salle, called Stroud while he was out on the course to tell him he had lost the race for Student Body President. 

The call went to voicemail but after listening to it, he continued his game and ended up hitting a shot that went straight in. “My buddies all saw and we raced up and chest bumped and it was a kind of cool moment that took a maybe low moment and turned it into a high moment really quick,” he said. 

View Comments (2)
More to Discover

Comments (2)

We'd love to hear your thoughts! Let us know what you think about this story by submitting a comment below. We welcome respectful comments that engage in conversations.

Comments are moderated, and won't appear until they are approved. An email address is required, but won't be publicly displayed. The Falconer's complete comment policy can be viewed on our policies page.
All The La Salle Falconer Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

  • K

    Kathy GayMar 23, 2024 at 11:02 am

    What a terrific article. I love how Dawson disperses his thanks to those who have helped him along the way AND reminds other younger players that there is much to gain from those who have come before. Congratulations to Dawson on his hard work that is paying off in so many ways! (Full disclosure: I am one of his proud aunts😁)

  • B

    Brenda PetersonMar 23, 2024 at 10:58 am

    Nice article Dawson! Best of luck this year out on the golf course.