Shaw swings her way into college

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Junior Julia Shaw played in the number two position on Mercy's Varsity Golf team this past fall and hopes to move up to the number one position next season (Photo Credit: Kate Shaw).

Lilly Blake, Staff Reporter

For junior Julia Shaw, golf is not just a high school sport. It has brought about opportunity after opportunity, causing her to travel all over the United States and to the Bahamas. Shaw has also been able to watch and meet accomplished athletes. Along with these rare opportunities, golf is helping Shaw get into college.

“Golf has been so important and helpful during this college process,” Shaw said. “I am so lucky to have something like golf that is bringing me opportunities that I would not otherwise have.”

Shaw is hoping to attend either Northern Arizona University or the University of Boulder to play golf in the fall of 2016.  While narrowing down her options, Shaw was looking for a Divison 1 (D1) golf school with generally warm weather so that she could play year round.

“I have worked really hard over the past few years,and a D1 school is something I have always been striving for,” Shaw said. Both the University of Boulder and Northern Arizona University are D1.

Getting to this point, however, has not been easy. Even in the winter, Shaw practices every day, averaging 14 hours per week.

“It is really hard practicing in the winter,” Shaw said. “I just have to hit the ball into a net. I still try to practice the same amount during the winter as in the summer.”

This grueling work pays off, though.

“Since freshman year, my mindset while playing golf has completely changed,” Shaw said. “My score averages have dropped a little more than 10 strokes since the freshman golf season.”

Shaw learned to play golf at age 6 and has been playing ever since. She feels very lucky to have learned this game that brought her so many other opportunities.

“I am so happy to be a part of a sport that I will be able to play for the rest of my life, even at age 85,” Shaw joked.