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Former Hornets Golfer Plays First Professional Tournament

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Author: Tina Joly

Release Date: Jun 08, 2012

Recent ASU graduate John Montgomery (’12) walked off the stage with his degree this spring and onto the links with his golf clubs as a professional golfer.

John Montgomery spent four years on ASU’s SWAC championship golf team and now is living his dream as a professional golfer.

The Pittsburgh native graduated with his bachelor’s degree in business marketing this spring and played in his first professional golf tournament soon after.

For Montgomery, the game of golf has been a longtime passion. He joined a junior golf program when he was eight years old.

“A small group of black golfers developed the program and passed on their knowledge of the game. I learned the game of golf from them,” Montgomery said.

When Montgomery decided he wanted to attend college in the South, he sent a DVD of his golf highlights to ASU golf coach Gary Grandison.

“I had the chance to visit ASU. I met some of the players… they were very dedicated and passionate about the game and said they wanted to go to the next level. I thought that it was great that I could be around guys who wanted the same things that I wanted, so I decided to come to ASU,” Montgomery said. “We had a very competitive tournament schedule at ASU. I had a chance to play with some of the best Division 1 golfers in the country. Just seeing what it takes to compete really helped me.”

Montgomery still is excited about the experience of playing in his first professional tournament in Anniston, Ala., earlier this month.

“It was great. I had a chance to play with some veteran golfers and some really good guys who competed on the level I’m trying to get to. It was a really good experience, and I learned a lot,” Montgomery said. “I was in the middle of the pack on the first day, but unfortunately my driver broke and I struggled after that. I didn’t win any money, but it left me hungry.”

Montgomery’s future as a professional golfer looks promising. He already has secured one sponsor and is hoping to gain more supporters soon.

Sponsorship is essential to professional golfers because of entry fee costs and travel and living expenses.

“You are very limited in how much golf you can play without a sponsor’s support… until you start winning,” Montgomery said.

For now, Montgomery is striving to do his best, and he hopes he will continue living his dream for years to come.

“I want to play the best golf that I can. I’m practicing really hard,” Montgomery said. “I would like to get to qualifying school at the end of the summer. and I would like to qualify for the nationwide tour and eventually make it to the PGA tour.”

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