My first ACE was recorded by The Golf Channel for the first show of Big Break Florida!
This week the tour featured me. What a nice article.
February 26 2014, Ward Clayton
Jackie Stoelting was driving from Mesa, AZ, to Los Angeles on Monday, moving from one Symetra Tour event to another on what could become an impactful day.
A quick lunchtime stop for a juicy In-N-Out burger mid-trip kept her energized toward a mandatory late afternoon meeting in LA for this week’s Volvik Championship. The Monday night debut of “Big Break Florida,” the Golf Channel’s popular reality show that features 12 aspiring women golfers, was scheduled for later that evening. Stoelting is one of the participants who will attain newfound fame. She survived the opener, highlighted by an ace on a 95-yard shot.
“That show was honestly the most pressure I’ve ever felt,” said Stoelting, who got a sneak peak of the first episode last week. “I played in and made the cut in the U.S. Women’s Open last year, and any other time over 18 holes you have plenty of time to make up for a mistake. On ‘Big Break’ you could hit one bad shot and you don’t have time to recover. There was so much more pressure than I anticipated.”
The exposure is another step in Stoelting’s effort to prove herself. She currently has conditional status on the LPGA (she barely missed in a Monday qualifying playoff for the season-opening Pure Silk-Bahamas LPGA Classic) and is focusing on the Symetra Tour this season.
“I’ve never been a really standout player,” Stoelting said. “I was involved in a lot of other things growing up – singing, acting and dancing – and when I was asked to be on the show, I just hoped it would help me to find sponsors and assist me in reaching my goal of playing fulltime on the LPGA.”
Even though golf hasn’t been her be-all, end-all, what with the stage interest and a degree in Elementary Education from Florida Southern, the 27-year-old Vero Beach, Fla., resident has been driven.
She started playing at age 4, her mother was her high school coach, when she improved from a 100 shooter to an under-par average, and was a two-time, second-team Division II All-American at Florida Southern after earning a partial scholarship. She is the first Mocs’ female player to attain LPGA status.
Jackie met husband Travis, an assistant golf professional, at the 2009 PGA Show and he proposed on the 18th tee of their home course in 2012. Travis also serves as her swing coach and part-time caddie.
When they were married last May, Jackie was off to a Symetra Tour event two days later. She also qualified for the U.S. Women’s Open last summer just after their honeymoon in Myrtle Beach, S.C.
“When I got out of college, there was no way I could give this up,” Stoelting said. “I thought I could teach in a few years. I was young and didn’t want to feel bad that I didn’t try. What helps me a lot in this journey is that this isn’t what I have to do. That has put me at ease in my golf career.”
Here is a video clip of my interview about trying out for the show: