That's a tough one. I think with todays labor rates that it's tough to manufacture a 'serious' reel at under $150. That being said the RS2 looks like a good bet and you can't beat Redington's warranty and service. Jim Murphy (President) is the real deal and you should say hello next time you see him at the fly shows which he personally attends.
For a little more you can try the Tioga LA reels, no drag problems there and for freshwater use they are low to no maintenance.
Of course there are std arbor reels in that class you could consider too, but you said LA.