Posted at 2:52 PM Updated at 2:52 PM
Tell me something about the first time you played golf?
In second grade, my PE coach, Lance Wheatley, had an after-school sports program. Mondays we went skating. Tuesdays we went swimming. Wednesdays we went bowling. And Thursdays we went to the golf course at Jimmy Clay to play the short par-three course that was just right for us kids. Skating was fun, swimming was cool, bowling was a hoot, but I lived for Thursdays when we went to the golf course.
What has been your best golf memory?
I was the only Regents golfer to qualify for the state tournament my freshman year. I tied for 10th place and wound up in a playoff against a high school senior for all-state honors. There were 30-40 people watching when I sank the winning putt. My friends from the Hyde Park girls team — our rivals — rushed the green to congratulate me.
Has golf taught you any lessons you use in daily life?
Hit and recover. In golf, every time you get behind a tree or in a penalty area, you have to bounce back and recover right then and there; otherwise, you blow up and your round begins to sink. The same can be said for life. If you get hit with hard times, you have to bounce back and recover immediately in order to succeed.
If you had a choice of being all-state in golf or valedictorian of the senior class, what would you pick?
Well, I have already been an all-state golfer for three years and won academic all-state the first year I was eligible. I might just have to give valedictorian a try.
Tell me something about you most people don’t know.
No one ever realizes that I am adopted since I look exactly like my parents. But I was adopted as a baby, and I still have a relationship with my birth mother, and now my younger brother and sister as well.
If you could have dinner with four people in the history of the world, who would they be?
(Golfer) Lexi Thompson; my birth father, whom I’ve never met; Coach Wheatley, and my (maternal) grandfather.
Why did you pick your grandfather?
He died when my mom was only 13, so I never met him. But I’ve heard so many stories about him that I know he would be a wonderful dinner guest.
Do you have plans after you graduate?
My plan is to go to college and receive the best education I can while playing competitive college golf. I hope to major in engineering, mainly because I absolutely love math and science.
What do you consider the world’s greatest invention?
The phone. Thirty years ago, this technology would have seemed impossible. The processors and equipment necessary to run a computer used to take up full rooms. I always think of the computers in the basement of SHIELD headquarters in “Captain America: The Winter Soldier.”