Hartselle golfer hopes to go on tour one day
One Hartselle 6A state golf champion has dreams of becoming a touring golfer with corporate sponsors.
Garrett Reist, a rising senior at Hartselle High School, takes golf seriously. He started playing with his dad when he was about 5, but he started practicing and honing his skills when he was 12 or 13. He joined the golf team as a ninth grader and helped lead them to their first state championship this past season.
Reist was named the state individual runner-up during the state tournament last month. He tied for second individually in the Morgan County tournament with teammate Jake Tiffin, and the team took home the Morgan County championship title for the third time in a row. He was also named to the Super All-State golf team among other accomplishments.
Reist said he owes most of his physical talent to his dad.
“My dad played golf for Jacksonville State University and he toured a little after that,” Reist said. “My dad taught me most all of the physical aspects of the game, and I guess I got some natural talent for it from him.”
Reist would like to continue playing golf in college and has several tournaments lined up to get attention from scouts this summer.
“I would love to play at either the University of Alabama in Birmingham or The University of Alabama, but we’re trying to let the scouts come to me,” Reist said. “I have over seven tournaments that I’m going to be in this summer, including the Future Masters and the United States Mens Amateur Qualifier at Burningtree. Hopefully if I do well in some of those it will get me noticed. I’ve had members at Burningtree tell me if I was able to tour later they would try to help me get sponsors. Getting to tour with golf would be a dream come true for me.”
While he is proud of his four-under par state performance, he still feels he has room for improvement next season.
“My dad kept telling us that someone on the team had to go low for the state tournament, and it happened to be me,” Reist said. “I had never seen a score like ours in a junior team before. We had a great tournament. We’re getting there, but I will still be practicing just about every day like I have been. I’m hoping to continue to mature my game this summer and next season.”
Being on a strong team really brings out his competitiveness.
“Being on a good team makes you think about every stroke because one bad hole affects your whole team,” Reist said. “We are really close and like to be competitive. We play games to see who can drive the farthest and stuff, but we also help each other get better.”
Reist said HHS’s Coach Chad Gladden has helped him most with his mental game.
“Coach Gladden teaches us that we have to focus on each hole rather than each stroke,” Reist said. “If we didn’t hit it as well as we wanted, we have to let it go or it’s just going to get worse. We can’t get down on ourselves and tense up or our shots will be off. If we let a bad stroke go, we might can pull it back together.”
Reist said the competitiveness is his favorite aspect of golf.
“I like being competitive, and golf is such an individual competitive sport,” Reist said. “It can be a lot of fun when you’re good, so all the practice pays off and is worth it in the end.”