Aaron Beverly: a golfer with no limits

Aaron+Beverly%2C+a+rising+star+on+the+Sacramento+State+men%27s+golf+team%2C+practices+on+a+Friday+morning+at+the+Ancil+Hoffman+golf+course%2C+March+18.

Aaron Beverly, a rising star on the Sacramento State men’s golf team, practices on a Friday morning at the Ancil Hoffman golf course, March 18.

Angel Guerrero

Successful golfers all over the U.S. such as Tiger Woods and Michelle Wie, picked up their golf clubs at a young age.

Junior Aaron Beverly of the Sacramento State men’s golf team is no different.

Beverly, 21, picked up his first golf club at the age of four, and his passion for the sport intensified as he accompanied his father to the driving range. The Fairfield, California native learned everything he could from his dad in a similar fashion to his biggest idol, Tiger Woods.

“I connected with [Woods] for one because he was the only African-American golfer that you could watch on television, and me being African-American, that was just an instant draw,” Beverly said. “The way he won and competed all the time. Obviously everyone loves a winner, so that was something that anyone would want to be like.”

Beverly, a psychology major, has channeled this inspiration into a winning formula of his own at Sac State in the form of honorable mention all-Big Sky honors in 2015, 4-time Big Sky Men’s Golfer of the Week and a 74-69-64-207 first place performance at the Sac State Invitational earlier in the season which placed him fourth in program history.

Senior teammate Taylor Knoll is one of the numerous Hornets on the golf team to have taken notice of the strides that Beverly has taken during his four years with the program.

“He’s an extremely hard worker. Always putting in the extra time to improve his game,” Knoll said. “Practicing on the weekends and stuff so he’s really been working hard, and it shows in how his game has improved over the year. He’s definitely taken his game to the next level.”

However, the new heights that Beverly has reached this season wouldn’t have been possible if it weren’t for the adversity that he overcame during his early years at Sac State.

“My freshman year was really just a year full of turmoil. We had one kid get cut midway through. We had to play in a couple tournaments shorthanded,” Beverly said. “I was hurt for one tournament so that was kind of a rough year … this year we all kind of knew going into the season that we had the best team in Sac State history, so it’s been fun to watch the progression of guys get better. It’s good to see the team go in the right direction.”

One such golfer who has helped steer Beverly and the Hornets in the right direction is fifth-year senior Owen Taylor, as he’s been a part of the golf team during its best and worst seasons.

“Performing in the downs of the program and performing in the ups of the program has benefited him [Beverly],” Taylor said. “He knows what it’s like to be on the lower end of the totem pole and excel at the higher end of the totem pole. It makes him work harder because he doesn’t want to go back to those lower positions.”

The Hornets have made recent downs a thing of the past, as this season they’re already off to a solid start with two team championships at the SCVB Pacific Invitational in Stockton, California on Oct. 31 and the Sac State Invitational on Tuesday, March 8.

Beverly has been equally as impressive in his last two tournaments as he took first place at the Sac State Invitational and tied for second place at the Border Olympics in Laredo, Texas. He believes that these accomplishments will help as he and his teammates are determined to perform at their best when it matters the most.

“I know our biggest goal this year is to win [the Big Sky] conference. It’s the goal we set at the beginning of the year, and that’s the goal we’re going to go with the rest of the season,” Beverly said. “Every tournament we enter, we want to win and play well. The same with me individually. I want to win every tournament I go into and play the best that I can play.”

Beverly and the Sac State men’s golf team will have the opportunity to accomplish this as they next compete in the Barona Collegiate Cup in Lakeside, California on Monday, March 21.

Until then, you can expect Beverly to be spending time with his teammates, studying psychology and avidly watching Tiger Woods highlights on YouTube