Swinging for Success
Jacob Burkholder hits the range for about an hour everyday.
"He's out there all the time. He does a really hard practice schedule and competitive schedule during the summer," said Smith-Cotton head golf coach BJ Curry.
Curry says Burkholder shows dedication he usually doesn't see from a 15 year old. Not only is Jacob just a freshman, but he's number two on his team in scoring average.
"I know Jacob has been in the fire and he can handle it so number two is just his natural position," said Curry.
But at the start of the season, Jacob couldn't get his game off the ground.
"It seems like it's getting better, the beginning of the year was shaky," said freshman golfer Jacob Burkholder.
"I've been nervous, it's a different kind of pressure for me playing in these events because you're not only playing for yourself, you're playing for the team and for your school, and for your town," said Burkholder's teammate.
But this all changed in early April when Jacob shot a 36 in nine holes. And won the match against Harrisonville.
"He played like he wasn't nervous, like there was no pressure on him," said Curry
"I told him good round, I know he has the ability to play that well," said Smith-Cotton senior golfer Jaime Newman.
"I was just relaxed, there weren't as many trees on that course so I wasn't as worried about always having to punch out," said Burkholder.
And now that he's shot par, his coach and teammates expect him to do it again.
"The thing about golf is that it doesn't matter how old you are, you can compete," said Curry
"I'm really proud of that and take confidence from that," said Burkholder.
And with the district tournament approaching, Burkholder and his teammates are shooting for a title. Burkholder's average is under 40 for 9 holes and he shot 80 in his last tournament on Monday. Smith-Cotton plays in it's district tournament May 7th.