The Washington Interscholastic Activities Association canceled spring state championships earlier this month because of Gov. Jay Inslee closing schools for the remainder of the academic year because of the coronavirus outbreak. The decision left seniors in baseball, softball, boys soccer, golf, tennis and track and field without a finale to their high-school careers. We’ll spotlight a few of those student-athletes in a weekly Sunday series.
Name: Ian Siebers
School: Bellevue High
Accomplishments: Siebers helped the Wolverines win the 2019 Class 3A state boys golf championship as a junior, placing second individually. The 2018 Pacific Northwest Golf Association Junior Player of the Year was selected to the Junior Presidents Cup team and helped the U.S. beat an international squad for the title in Australia last December. The event was a precursor to the 2019 Presidents Cup.
Best high-school memory: Winning state. The five-player team celebrated at Taco Time.
Quarantine tip: Sleep in so there’s less time in the day to get bored.
The skinny: Looking at a backyard strategically landscaped with rumpled towels and a net to simulate a golf course because stay-at-home orders closed area links, Siebers is reminded how his passion started.
“I had a little plastic set of golf clubs and little plastic balls that I whacked around in the backyard,” Siebers said of toys his father bought him as a toddler. “I loved going out in the backyard and hitting around. … I would never do it nowadays. I always drive myself to the range. ”
Life during the pandemic forced Siebers to adjust. Workout sessions are via Zoom and hallways are putting strips while towels in the backyard help practice chipping and his short game.
Bellevue expected to defend its state title because all five players returned to the team this season. The Wolverines finished second at the Class 3A SeaKing District tournament last fall, losing by one stroke to Mercer Island and O’Dea, which tied for the championship.
Siebers was seventh overall with a score of 72.
The Junior Presidents Cup in December was Siebers last competition. He spent two weeks in Melbourne, staying to watch Tiger Woods help the U.S. win the main event.
“That was the most fun I’ve had in a golf tournament in my life,” Siebers said. “Being on the same venue as the professional golfers and getting a chance to spend some time with the professionals too was overall an amazing experience.”
Siebers is eager for golf courses to reopen to continue to prepare to play in college. He received a partial scholarship to Duke.
“I’m also looking forward to hanging out with friends again, trying to savor these last few months before college,” he said.