If your life consists of nothing but scoring low and aiming high, you might be sophomore, Nate Jolly. 

Jolly was born and raised in North Little Rock, hoping to bring a fresh approach and achieve success in the game of golf just as his hero Tiger Woods did. 

Jolly has been playing golf for UCA since the summer of 2020, but golf has been in his blood ever since the eighth grade when a friend introduced him to the sport. He traded his baseball bat in for a golf club and decided he should take it on full time. 

Jolly’s career in golf started with high scores and low chances of collegiate offers, but with persistence and practice, he was able to lower the number of strokes he had on the course. 

“My senior year of high school I wanted to play golf at UCA, but I wasn’t very good.” Jolly said. “So, I figured I wouldn’t really have a chance to make it, so I signed and went to play at a junior college in Coastal Alabama. Then I decided it wasn’t a fit so I emailed coach Steve Runge.”

The two had conversed multiple times about the chance that Jolly had about getting on the team, but with luck, he found himself in his sophomore year with a chance at the tee box. 

“My sophomore year I played and practiced with the team almost as a tryout, then this summer he gave me a call.” Jolly said. “[Runge] told me I made it and that was my path here to UCA.” 

Golf is only a part of Jolly’s life.

He openly addressed his college life is not one he focuses on, but the dream he has is high in the sky as a commercial airline pilot. 

“Currently, [I study] insurance and risk management… because after school I want to either play golf or potentially become a pilot for the Air National Guard.” 

With this being said, Jolly and his peers are aware that this degree is only to benefit his “life duties after graduation as an adult” rather than a career path in insurance sales or being a claims adjuster. 

The sky is the literal goal for Jolly and is already in pursuit of it, “I have been taking flying lessons in the hope to become a pilot. This helps me get my hours so I can become just that.” Jolly said. 

All in all, Jolly’s life is nothing but a progression of ‘what can I do better.’ He constantly shoots for the clouds and the motto he lives by continues to show true in his life; through his personal story, his progression in the game to now hold a spot amongst serious competitors, and his future endeavors. 

“If I were to pick a life motto it would be ‘it’s about the journey, not the destination’,” Jolly said, “because whatever you do if you rush to finish or get to a certain place, you miss out versus enjoying all the challenges and people you face and meet on the way to your goal.”


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