LAS VEGAS, NV (Jan. 20, 2022)–Growing up, Bishop Gorman senior Roycee Southerland didn’t really think golf was the sport for her. Little did she know how wrong she was. She’s now used golf as a way to earn a college scholarship and it also is leading her back home. –Bill Bowman, Las Vegas Golf Insider staff.
Southerland said getting into the sport was something she just couldn’t imagine in her younger days.
“I started playing when I was around 13,” she said. “I would go out once a year with my dad (Royce) and never really thought much about it.”
Growing up playing the usual variety of sports, including a little figure skating, she loved the athleticism of sports. And that eventually included golf.
“I started playing golf a little more and was upset I couldn’t pick it up as quickly as other sports,” she said. “It was a lot tougher than it looked.”
She added the mental side of the sport was the toughest to figure out.
“When I first started out, my mental game was terrible,” she said. “But I kept at it and looked at golf as a challenge. The challenge is what made me stay with it and I’ve turned it into a positive and my mental side has really improved as I got better.”
And that improvement has paid off with huge dividends.
“I was just driven to be good at it,” she said. “And now, here I am ready to play golf in college.”
She was quick to add the Southern Nevada Junior Golf Association has had a huge impact on her growth both on and off the golf course.
“With junior golf, I met so many new people and have made so many new connections,” she said. “I’ve met a variety of people who now will be lifelong friends.”
And the junior tournaments also helped her playing-wise and attitude-wise.
“The tournaments have prepared me mentally,” she said. “In some tournaments I’ve done well and in others…not so well. But no matter the outcome, they have given me more confidence in myself and I’ve learned a lot about myself.”
While she’s happy with her game, she knows there’s always work to be done.
“I’m always trying to improve my putting,” she said. “It’s pretty good right now but you can never work too much on it. If you can putt well, it’s going to help your game and your confidence.”
At Bishop Gorman under head coach James Stanfill, Southerland had an impressive career. According to the Winona State women’s golf press release, Southerland earned a 75.5 scoring average and was also a three-time all Region selection, helping the Gaels to a Nevada High School runner-up finish.
Now, it’s on to college as she will head to Winona State in Minnesota where she will major in business.
“Well, I’m originally from Minnesota and I’ve always wanted to go back up north,” she said. “I’m more familiar with the north and I’m looking forward to going back.”
And as for golf staying in her future, there’s no doubt the golf clubs will always be by her side.
“I really want to see how far golf will take me,” she said. “Who knows…maybe I will be on Tour one day or in the business world. Wherever I may end up, golf will be right there.”