Wellesley Athlete of the Week is made possible with sponsorship support from Deland, Gibson Insurance. The family-owned and operated business has carried on this Wellesley tradition for over 30 years.
Athlete of the Week: Ryan Keyes
Favorite Golfer: Jordan Spieth
Sophomore Ryan Keyes is a star on the Wellesley High School golf team, but he only began taking the sport seriously a little over two years ago. Today, he is not only one of the best players on the team, but is also one the finest golfers in the entire state after winning the individual Massachusetts Division 1 championship this fall at Wentworth Hills Golf Club in Plainville. The team finished second overall in the tournament.
“I was the first golfer from Wellesley to do that and it was the highest Wellesley had finished in the state tournament, so it was a win-win I guess,” Keyes said.
Senior teammate Andrew Ng loves how much energy Keyes brings to the team.: “He can be calm and very collected on the course when he needs to be, but he can be very high energy at the same time.”
Keyes looks forward to building his golf career through high school and into college, where he hopes to compete for one of his dream schools. But right now he just wants to have fun on the course.
“My most memorable moment as a golfer was when I had my first hole out and my best friend, Lincoln Blake, and I bolted towards each other to celebrate, ” Keyes said.
While there’s no question that Keyes has fallen in love with the sport, his favorite part is the work that it requires.
“You can’t fake being a good player, the hardest worker will be the best, and my strength is probably my mind because, in golf, one bad hole can ruin a day,” he said. “But I like to think I am good at handling adversity.”
Wellesley High School Gold coach Ken Bateman is amazed by Keyes’s talent and dedication.
“Ryan was a great player for our team all year, from the first match until the last. He led the way at the state sectional tournament and the state tournament. He listens to recommendations about course management and works very hard to be the best he can be. Not only is he a great golfer, but he is also a leader on and off the course. Many players already look to him for guidance, and he is only a sophomore.” Bateman said.
During the offseason, Keyes finds creative ways to keep his skills sharp, such as by practicing putting in his basement. Yet during the season, he is able to have a much more rigorous practice regime.
“In the season I always make sure to be playing golf once a day for around two hours in the school year and closer to 5-7 hours in the summer,” he says.
There’s no question that Keyes is a hard-working and gifted golfer, and coaches and teammates wonder what else he can accomplish before he graduates.
“I cannot wait to see what the next two years have in store for him,” said Coach Bateman
Article written by The Bradford’s Ben Galligan.
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