Students Tee Off at IGSSA Golf Tournament
It’s not common to hear of young girls choosing golf as their preferred sport. However, six Santa Maria College students are bucking this trend.
Ava Donovan (Year 10), Layla Morris (Year 8), Sofia Abrahams (Year 7), Mia Wright (Year 7), Stephanie Kerr (Year 7) and Shanae Maher (Year 8) recently represented the College in the IGSSA Golf Tournament at Cottesloe Golf Club.
Last year Santa Maria was represented by just two girls. With the likes of Western Australian Minjee Lee winning the US Women’s Open and being ranked third in the world, we might see the number increase further in 2023.
We asked the girls about their golf.
Ava began playing 18 months ago. When she was younger, she would go to the driving range with her dad on weekends, and she believes this is what piqued her interest in the sport.
Ava is also an accomplished swimmer, so when she’s not swimming, she usually practices or plays three times a week.
We asked her what she thinks makes a good golfer, and she said, “I think you need to be able to stay calm when shots don’t go as planned and have the patience to stay focused for every shot.”
Sofia has been playing golf since she was ten. “I can’t remember what it was that made me love this sport. I just knew I wanted to play it. I love that it helps me build on my emotional strength. Golf encourages me to bounce back from a bad shot or hole so that it doesn’t affect the rest of my game. My favourite golfer is Hannah Green. She is very skilled, and it is very empowering to watch her and other female golfers play. I have golf lessons every Sunday morning and will go to the driving range almost every Saturday. I believe golf has nothing to do with talent. It is all about hard work. To play golf, you must be committed and hardworking. You need to have control over your emotions and be able to be resilient when the game gets tough.”
Mia has been playing for just one year. She was inspired to start playing golf after seeing all the amazing wins of other people and how they were having fun. “So I gave it a try, and now I like golf. What I love most about it is how I can just have fun and let it all out by winning games and competing against others. I have golf lessons on Sunday afternoons, and I usually play golf games when a golf game comes up. To prepare for the IGSSA competition, I practised my chipping/pitching and putting every day.”
Layla has been playing golf since she was in Year 3. She was inspired by her dad, who would share little tips and tricks about how to be a good golfer. “I love the bonding time with my dad when we walk around the course together. My favourite golfer is Minjee Lee because she is a great female role model. I usually play once a week with my dad. To be a good golfer, I believe you need to have good sportsmanship, be kind and very polite.”
Stephanie started playing about four years ago. She started at the Point Walter Golf Club but transferred to Royal Fremantle Golf Club a term later. “My mum and grandad inspired me to start golf. They played every week, and I wanted to see what it was like. I love the highs and the lows. Hitting good shots is one of the most satisfying things ever. Minjee Lee is also my favourite golfer. She started playing at around the same age I did and grew up with her younger brother playing at my home club, Royal Fremantle Golf Club. She has signed my hat, and I’ve had two photos taken with her. She even gave me a signed outfit from when she went to the Olympics in 2016 and 2021.”
When asked what skills she thinks make a good golfer, Stephanie said, “I think that you need to be resilient and have a clear mind. With all the ups and downs of golf, if you aren’t careful, golf can be frustrating and tedious.”
You never know, we might see some of these girls at the US Open in the future!