Ohio State women’s golfer Jaclyn Lee will not only be representing the Buckeyes in 2016 but also the 2016 Canadian national amateur team, as the freshman from Calgary, Alberta, was recently named to the roster.
Golf Canada selects five amateur men and women to join the national squad each year with the hope of preparing them for a future professional golf career, according to its website. The selections are made based on objective performance results.
“I’m extremely blessed to be given the opportunity to be one of those five people,” Lee said. “It feels great. It’s definitely a reward for the season that I had last year and to know that hard work is paying off.”
The freshman had spent the previous two years on the Team Canada Development Squad, which pushed her to work even harder.
“I’ve seen the benefits to being a national squad member, all the support you get in terms of coaching, and the team kind of becomes another family to you. So that’s definitely motivated me,” Lee said. “We have access to so many resources, but it’s really up to you to take advantage of them.”
OSU women’s golf coach Therese Hession said having someone of Lee’s caliber on the squad is an honor.
“Somebody who really is one of the top five amateurs in all of Canada, obviously we’re really excited to have her on board,” Hession said. “I think the opportunity is fun, as a coach, to have somebody that’s at that level.”
When she was around 11 years old, Lee said her father introduced her and her sister to golf with the intentions of it becoming a family sport.
“I didn’t really expect too much of golf, but then my sister and I kind of picked it up a bit more naturally than others,” Lee said. “We’ve been enjoying it and started to do competitive golf. From then on it was kind of like, ‘Oh, get a scholarship to go play in the states.’”
The Buckeyes completed the first half of their schedule on Oct. 25. Lee averaged a score of 75 in her nine rounds played and contributed four scores out of six rounds to the team total when in the OSU lineup.
Lee said she is still adjusting to collegiate time management, but she knows what she needs to work on when the Buckeyes resume play in the spring.
“From the fall season, we’ve all taken away things that we need to work on with our game and as a team. There are different aspects of my game that I’d like to work on over this offseason, and hopefully that will translate into a better spring season for the team,” Lee said.
Hession said she is impressed with what she has seen from Lee so far.
“I think mechanically her swing is very solid, and I’ve been impressed with her controlling her emotions on the golf course while she’s competing,” Hession said. “She picks things up very quickly, and she’s got a good work ethic to go along with it as well.”
Lee, who calls finishing 16th at the Canadian Women’s Amateur and taking home titles at the Alberta Ladies Amateur and Albert Junior Girls championships as her biggest accomplishments, has goals at the collegiate level and beyond.
“I want to learn a lot from coach here at Ohio State and hopefully get some individual titles and some team wins. Hopefully our team can get a national championship under our belt,” Lee said. “After college, I’d like to turn pro and be successful on the LPGA circuit at some point.”
Lee and the women’s golf team are set to return to action Feb. 7 in Palos Verdes, California, at the Northrop Grumman Regional Challenge.