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Humans of Harker: Going for the green

Scout McNealy keeps his head in the game

%22When+I%E2%80%99m+hitting+a+shot%2C+I+think+about+absolute+nothing+but+the+target.+I+find+that+when+I+think+about+more+than+that%2C+like+what+the+shot+means+and+about+other+factors%2C+then+it+kind+of+distracts+me.+If+I+can+block+everything+out+of+my+mind+except+for+the+target%2C+then+I+can+hit+the+best+shot+I+can%2C%22+Scout+McNealy+%2812%29+said.
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Humans of Harker: Going for the green

"When I’m hitting a shot, I think about absolute nothing but the target. I find that when I think about more than that, like what the shot means and about other factors, then it kind of distracts me. If I can block everything out of my mind except for the target, then I can hit the best shot I can," Scout McNealy (12) said.

Laura Wu

"When I’m hitting a shot, I think about absolute nothing but the target. I find that when I think about more than that, like what the shot means and about other factors, then it kind of distracts me. If I can block everything out of my mind except for the target, then I can hit the best shot I can," Scout McNealy (12) said.

Laura Wu

Laura Wu

"When I’m hitting a shot, I think about absolute nothing but the target. I find that when I think about more than that, like what the shot means and about other factors, then it kind of distracts me. If I can block everything out of my mind except for the target, then I can hit the best shot I can," Scout McNealy (12) said.

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Whenever he has time, Scout McNealy (12) can often be found out at a golf course, where he spent a lot of time during winter break. He even stopped playing hockey, another sport that he used to play competitively, so that he could focus on golf more. Growing up with a dad and brothers who were passionate about golf, he was introduced to the sport at a young age.

“I started when I was super young. My dad and brothers used to always go play on the weekends and I would just practice with them and that’s how I started to like the game,” he said. “I’ve seen a lot of my friends and brothers play well, and I kind of want to follow in their footsteps and make my own path, and I always want to keep getting better at it.”

Striving to be the best he can, he is motivated to continue and pushes himself to refine his skills.

“I like how you can always get better at it; there’s really no limit to how good you can get,” he said. “It’s an individual sport, so everything is your fault and on you, and also when you’re successful, it’s all because of you.”

Needing to be self-reliant, he puts even more effort into practicing, so it is gratifying when he improves.

“Whenever I play well, I’m always proud of how I do because I’ve so much time working on my game and practicing and to see results, makes it very rewarding,” he said. “I practice so much on my own and when I finally do get to see results, it’s nice to know that what I’ve been doing haven’t just been going to waste and it’s sort of paying dividends.”

His dedication to practicing has ingrained techniques, and it paid off during one of his recent games.

“I made a birdie on my last hole on a tournament to get into a play off after being way behind,” he said. “I was super happy at that because I’ve been working so hard going up to it and then to finally to actually play well is just really gratifying.”

In preparation for a game, he goes through his usual routine, which settles his mind and helps him focus.

“Before every round, I get to the course and do the same exact routine that I do when I’m practicing. I get so used to it that it seems very natural. When I’m hitting a shot, I think about absolute nothing but the target,” he said. “I find that when I think about more than that, like what the shot means and about other factors, then it kind of distracts me. If I can block everything out of my mind except for the target, then I can hit the best shot I can.”

Golf has become especially important after being accepted into college for his skills.

“I pretty much just played golf every day [over winter break] and I played probably about 40 rounds of gold over the entire three weeks, so it was pretty heavy with golf,” he said. “I’m going to be playing. I’m going to Baylor next year to play for their team, so I want to prepare for that as best as I can.”

He’s taking a unique path compared to the rest of his family by deciding to go out of the state, but he wanted to do this to experience something new.

“Deciding to go to college far away was an important decision because my whole family stayed here and I kind of want to go off and do something different and learn how to live on my own a little bit more,” he said. “Being in a whole new social environment and having to learn how to fend for myself a little bit more will be hard for me, but it’ll be good. I kind of wanted to become a little bit more independent. At some point in my life, I’m going to have to learn how to be independent, so I figure I might as well start now.”

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Humans of Harker: Going for the green