By Kevin Russell, Sports Editor
October 3, 2012
As most college athletes have come to find out, unless you are a member of the basketball or football team it is very hard to gain proper recognition.
While media outlets provide an immense amount of coverage for college basketball and football they tend to forget about many of the less popular sports. This is tragic because many times a school’s best athletes can be found participating in these lesser acclaimed sports.
High Point University has many great athletes in some of these sports, but one that has recently drawn major attention is Chase Wilson of the men’s golf team.
Chase along with the entire men’s program recently won the Joe Agee Invitational, the team’s second tournament of the year. Chase led the team in scoring for the weekend firing a career best 54-hole score of 206 to win the individual tournament title.
“I was excited with how I played, but also extremely proud of the team,” said Wilson. “Honestly as a team we didn’t even play close to our best and won which is very encouraging.”
Wilson fired rounds of 67-67-72 to win and in the process also broke or matched the HPU records for 18, 36 and 54 holes.
The victory for Wilson was his second collegiate win and was just another step toward his ultimate goal of making it onto the PGA Tour.
“The sky is the limit for Chase,” said Greg Flesher, the men’s golf coach, in an interview on High Point University Radio. “He has such a nice swing, and on the greens [he] can roll it in from anywhere.”
Wilson realizes that he holds very lofty goals, but believes the motivation he has from not being picked to a Big South All-Conference team, as well as his incredible work ethic, will get him to the top.
“I’ve always loved golf for as long as I can remember. It’s truly all that I’ve ever wanted to do,” said Wilson. “If I continue with my progression, I truly know that I can make it out onto the PGA Tour.”
For Wilson the journey toward his goal has already started, as he is working on trying to secure a sponsor exemption onto the Webb.com Tour. If he is unable to find an exemption, Wilson plans to attend the well-known PGA Tour Qualifying School.
“Honestly the hardest part is getting a chance to go out there and compete,” said Wilson. “I’m hoping that I can somehow get a chance out there [PGA Tour] because I know if I do I can win.”
According to Flesher, Wilson possesses many of the keys that are needed to compete at the top level, including a 119 mph swing speed and an incredible short game.
Wilson attributes his success in golf to Danny Ackerman (his swing coach), Flesher and former HPU coach J.B. White. However, Wilson truly believes his father, Randy, has had the biggest impact.
“My dad taught me the composure that I have out on the golf course,” said Wilson. “I am able to stay focused and mentally grind because of him and what he taught me when I was young.”
This summer Wilson got to share an extremely special moment with his father when he qualified for the USGA Men’s Public Links Championship at Solider Hollow Golf Course in Midway, Utah.
This tournament is one of the premier amateur events in the world and Wilson was able to have his dad on his bag as his caddy.
“Words cannot even describe how special it was to have my dad on the bag,” said Wilson. “It was as close to a tour atmosphere as I have ever experienced and we got to experience it together. It was just incredible and something I’ll never forget.”
Wilson will finish out his HPU career next spring, but hopes that he will leave the program in a better position than when he arrived.
“I hope I set a good image for the players that will come here after me,” said Wilson. “I hope I set the bar high so that they have something to shoot for.”