15, and swinging like a pro
Kings High School sophomore and links phenom Alex Swayne has dedicated most of her life to golf, so much so that she has already been a champion at Augusta, played with celebrities, and this year started officially competing in national tournaments.
Swayne started playing golf when she was 11 years old, and by age 13 she had competed in the Callaway Junior World Golf Championships. Then at age of 15 she won the biggest youth golf tournament in the U.S.: the Drive Chip and Putt competition at Augusta National in Georgia, home of The PGA Master’s Tournament.
For Swayne, making it this far was a matter of persistence.
“On the weekdays I practice about 2.5 hours a day and on the weekends between 8 and 9 hours a day,” she said.
Although a former standout on the KHS Women’s Golf Team, this year Swayne cannot play for the golf team because she participates in national events. High school competition rules prohibit her from doing both. Golf Coach Brooke Warner explained her disappointment in the rules.
“I think it’s unfair that she’s missing an important part of high school, being punished because she is one of the top golfers her age,” Warner said.
Although Swayne cannot play high school golf, she does earn stars for every tournament she plays outside of school. She in turn is able to make her way into bigger tournaments with harder competition. Her instructors have all agreed that her future in golf is bright.
Golf has allowed Swayne to travel and meet many famous people. Swayne has played golf with Nick Jonas, Lexi Thompson, Michelle Wie, even Master’s Champion Nick Faldo (pictured right).
Swayne said this is exactly what she wants to be doing.
“If I ever ran away, my parents would know where to find me … the golf course,” Swayne said.