Comeback kid

Tough mentality gives golfer advantage

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Photo by Braylen Garren

photo illustration.

Story by Graci Henard, staff writer

In the eighth grade, senior Camden Robertson was just like any other boy when it came to sports. He played on the middle school football and basketball team, he even started on both offense and defense for the football B team. 

Robertson, however, knew that he probably wouldn’t have the opportunity to continue the majority of his middle school sports once in high school. Because of this, he leaned toward another sport: golf. 

“I knew it was the only sport I was going to have a chance to play on varsity just because of my size,” Robertson said. 

Although Robertson began occasionally playing golf around his eighth grade year, he did not begin to get serious about the sport until his freshman year when he joined the high school team coached by Jay Brewer. 

“I really started playing because my dad and grandpa wanted me to go travel with them to golf courses,” Robertson said. “I really wanted to travel to some of the places they were going.”

Even though he was still new to the game, Robertson earned a sport on the varsity golf team. Playing as the No. 4 golfer, he traveled to all of the tournaments within his first year. The scores he posted his freshman year were above average for a person so new to the game.

“My freshman year is definitely when I got serious about [golf],” Robertson said. “I believe I averaged an 88-89.” 

Over the past three and a half years Robertson has competed for the varsity golf team, his game has improved tremendously. As a senior, his scoring average currently is 72.1, shaving off about 17 strokes in just under four years. Robertson attributes part of his success to his mental strength. 

“I think learning from when I was a freshman and playing so poorly helped me get to where I am now,” Robertson said. “It got my mental game right.” 

He is not the only person who has taken notice of his mental strength. Head golf coach Ryan Huntze describes Robertson’s control of his mental patience as the reason he has improved so quickly.

“He’s never out of it,” Huntze said. “If he ever is playing bad, he is really good about turning it around. He flips a switch and never gets down on himself.”

Huntze also credits Robertson’s individuality as another reason for the improvement seen throughout his years on the golf team. 

“He trusts it. Golf is a beautiful game because there’s really not one formula of how to do things,” Huntze said. “Camden is really aware of what his body does. [His swing] doesn’t look like a lot of the other golf swings, but he gets it done.” 

 

Camden Robertson watches to see where his ball lies after his drive. The Tigers are expected to have a successful season. (Photo by Peyton Sims)

Camden is different from most golfers in that he has endured very little professional training. His swing is not perfect but is his own, and he is proud of it. 

“I don’t have a swing coach because I’ve just never prefered them,” Robertson said. “I like to swing my swing. I think it’s fun, and I think that’s how the game should be played.”

Robertson recognized his teammates for their role in his development as a golfer. Instead of going to a professional coach, he explained that teammates are who he leans on for fixing mechanical errors. He also acknowledged Huntze and the late golf coach Jay Brewer for their part in his success. 

“Coach Brewer and Coach Huntze helped the most because they’ve been [with me] through all of it,” Robertson said.

Brewer passed away June 5, 2019, the summer before Robertson’s junior year. The effect of this sudden loss impacted Robertson greatly.

“Brewer passing away [was my greatest adversity],” Robertson said. “It was a tough thing to get over. I think he’s proud of the way I’ve come so far.”

Over his three and a half years as a THS golfer, Robertson has shown great self discipline and talent in the improvement he has made. He has only a handful of tournaments left as a Tiger but plans to make the best of them. 

“I’m excited about what the rest of the season holds, despite the uncertainty of COVID-19,” Robertson said. “I think we have a really good shot at winning state this year and am looking forward to continuing to improve my game.”