Editor’s note: Emma Talley, 16, will file a diary each week this summer as she plays some of the premier junior events in the country.
Hello! My name is Emma Talley, and I am 16-year-old from Princeton, Ky. I am a sophomore and I just got my driver’s permit a month ago. My parents get a little tense when they watch their baby driving.
I have a big family, with two older brothers and one older sister. No one plays golf in my family but me! I started golf when I was 9 and started on the AJGA circuit at 12. I am a very social person, and the AJGA has given me many opportunities to meet and socialize with other people.
I go to a public high school that consists of about 500 students. My town is fairly small and I live on the only golf course. Even though my town is small, there are advantages when it comes to the golf course: I don’t ever have to make a tee time; I can just go out my back door and play.
School is coming to an end, which means FINALS. I practice as much as I can after school, which ends at 3, but I have to make sure I get my homework finished. However, I don’t get as much practice time on Wednesdays because I love to go to my youth group at church. Since I only have a few hours, I have to plan my practice schedule every day, but it has been a struggle to find time to practice this winter with the bad weather.
Last year, Kentucky went through a huge ice storm that wrecked the town, which included the golf course. This year we had some snow and lots of cold weather! The only good thing about the bad weather was that I got to really get in the gym more than I have in the past few years. It is crazy how much work is put into junior golf, but to get better you just have to make time. This spring has been a treat for me because I have gotten back on schedule with golf.
Not only are finals coming up, but I am also trying to qualify for the U.S. Women’s Open at Shady Oaks Country Club in Fort Worth, Texas. I’m not going to lie, I am nervous about it, especially since I am going to play with the 2009 NCAA individual champion.
This past weekend my golf coach and I practiced hard to try and get ready to play. This will be only my second tournament of the season (the AJGA’s Exide Technologies Junior Open was the first). Not only was it not a good weekend for my golf game, but the weather cancelled the first round of play. I didn’t play how I wanted to, but I learned what I needed to work on and I also got to see some of my golf friends I hadn’t seen since last summer.
Well, I have to get out and practice now! I hope everyone has a great week. I’ll talk to you next week.
Emma Talley, Princeton, Ky. (Class of 2012). Talley is a two-time Rolex Junior All-American and has four AJGA victories. In addition to her three wins in 2009, she posted a pair of runner-up finishes and advanced to the quarterfinals at the Polo Golf Junior Classic. She first broke 70 at the age of 11.