Golf team plays out of spotlight


courtesy of Drew Bradshaw

Juniors Daniel Poss and Drew Bradshaw tee-up with friends to play a casual game of golf.

Abby Peters

At many high schools, students flock to cheer on the football or basketball team. The crowds of students bring spirit to boost the teams’ morale and encourage victory.

However, that spirit is typically only brought to those two sports. Other sports teams are overlooked, with their bleachers consisting of only a handful of parents.

One little-known sport at Grady is golf. The golf program, which started in 2015, is relatively new. Very few fans have the opportunity to watch the team compete, team members said.

“People probably don’t know about the team because you can’t really go to the tournaments and watch; so it’s not well-advertised,” junior Drew Bradshaw said.

The golf tournaments are typically nine holes, which is shorter than a professional tournament of 18 holes. The tournaments are also on weekends, but because of the individuality of golf and the expanse of golf courses, the competitions are hard to watch.

“I think another reason not that many people know about us is because golf is more of an individual sport, rather than a team sport,” said senior Reid Schratwieser, who was also the kicker on the football team.

Despite the individuality of golf competitions, the team members said there is a lot of camaraderie among the players.

“My favorite part of the golf team is that it’s very fun, relaxing and a close-knit group,” Schratwieser said.

Other players also said the team isn’t only a team but is also a friendship building activity.

“I love being able to play nine holes after school with my friends,” junior Ben Moore said. The team also voiced that, aside from their friendships, the casualness of the sport makes it more enjoyable.

“Because golf is an individual sport, you’re not pressured to go to every practice; so, it doesn’t have to be a huge commitment if you don’t want it to be,” Bradshaw said. “I like playing; so, I try to go to every practice and every tournament. The [casual nature] makes it fun because I like being able to just hang out with my friends and play golf.”

Team members enjoy the process of practicing together to prepare for competitions.

“I can spend three hours with my friends having fun and can call that my sport,” junior Stanley Bennet said.

The team practices two or three times a week at either the Candler Park Golf Course or Brown’s Mill Golf Course. Sometimes the players go to a driving range. Golf is a spring sport, but the team starts preparations in the fall.

During the regular season, the team competes against Maynard Jackson, Decatur, Drew Charter and Marist. Once the team enters the 18-hole invitationals that come toward the end of their season, it competes with teams all over Georgia.

Previously, at the end of their seasons, the golf team has treated themselves to a night out at Top Golf, a recreational driving range that keeps score like a bowling alley and is known as much for its as its entertainment. This fun, golf-related activity furthers the team members’ friendships and love of the sport.

“We aren’t incredibly good,” junior and golf team captain Daniel Poss said. “That might be another reason people don’t know about us; we don’t win much; there’s not much to celebrate.”

However, the team is getting better.

“We’ve never won a regional championship, but we had our best finish last year,” Schratwieser said.