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Ivan Barahona Jr. of Crespi is preparing for the day a 10-foot putt is needed to win

Ivan Barahona Jr. practices his putting at home.

Ivan Barahona Jr. practices his placing at dwelling. (Ivan Barahona Sr.)

In the yard of the Barahona household dwelling is a placing inexperienced. Whether it’s morning or night, when Ivan Jr. is working towards his placing, it’s additionally dream time. Like a baseball participant fantasizing about a 3-and-2 depend with two outs in the ninth inning of a World Series sport, Barahona imagines a putt to win the U.S. Open or the Masters.

“I’d say I have a 10-footer and I need to make the putt to win,” Barahona stated. “Most of the time I’ve made it.”

A junior at Encino Crespi who’s dedicated to Long Beach State, Barahona is trying ahead to competing for a Southern Section particular person golf championship subsequent month. He gained the Mission League championship as a freshman in 2019, then golf was halted as a result of of the COVID-19 shutdown in 2020.

“I’ve been practicing a lot,” he stated. “I feel my game is good. It’s trusting myself and doing the right things. I’m hitting the ball real well.”

Barahona’s father, Ivan Sr., is well-known in the native basketball neighborhood. He guided Pacific Hills to 5 Southern Section titles and one state title till resigning in 2014 to turn into an assistant at Cal State Los Angeles and later coach the El Salvador nationwide crew. Now he focuses on serving to his son in golf, recording his swings and driving him to occasions.

“He truly loves the game, truly loves to play,” Ivan Sr. stated.

Ivan Jr. performed basketball rising up however earlier than getting into highschool he determined to think about golf full time. But not earlier than there was a little studying expertise. He needed to give up his eighth-grade basketball crew however his dad advised him no till he completed his dedication.

“I had a strange feeling something was going to happen,” Ivan Jr. stated. “I was in the game for 60 seconds and fractured my wrist. I was crying. My mom was hugging me.”

And son advised dad, “I told you so.”

The lesson was realized. You don’t give up after making a dedication, and Ivan Jr. is actually dedicated to golf, from a placing inexperienced to a internet to hit balls in the yard. Both have been a lot appreciated when golf programs have been closed throughout the COVID-19 shutdown.

“It was tough,” he stated. “I was so used to going to golf every day and being there six to nine hours. I would just go into the backyard, 30 minutes to an hour putting, hit balls for an hour to two hours working on drills in the game to stay in shape.”

Golf is the kind of sport that requires confidence, repetition and coping with stress to achieve success. Barahona defined his philosophy.

“If you practice right and you trust your game, it’s not that hard,” he stated. “But sometimes it’s really difficult if you practice correctly and hit that shot 10,000 times, you imagine that shot, take one or two breaths, close your eyes and commit to that shot. My coach says focus on the next shot. It’s already in the past. You can’t let this next shot be bad and affect you.”

Ivan Sr. stated he made it a level to give his son choices past basketball.

“I wanted to choose something we didn’t know anything about. We chose golf,” he stated. “I felt it would be easier on him.”

Ivan Jr.’s earliest reminiscence from his toddler days is hitting a plastic golf ball over the fence in his grandparents’ yard.

“My grandma told my dad, ‘Maybe it’s time for real clubs.’”

The relaxation is historical past. He’ll be prepared when a 10-foot putt is needed to win a huge event. Practice makes excellent.

This story initially appeared in Los Angeles Times.

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