After years away, Victoria native hits courses again with UHV
Allison Koenig is getting a second chance to redeem herself.
After playing golf and graduating from Memorial in 2008, she quit the sport completely. She even got her real estate license and became a successful agent.
"I earned a good paycheck," recalled the UHV golfer, 23, who is in her second year with the women's golf team. "It was a really nice deal."
But in fall 2012, an opportunity presented itself when Koenig heard about the UHV golf team. Still, she had doubts about competing on a collegiate level.
"I didn't think I would have an opportunity to play golf in college," Koenig said.
The sophomore is a regular starter for the Jaguars with a scoring average of 87.7 per round this season. She will be a key cog in the the team's lineup when UHV opens the Association of Independent Institutions tournament at the Club at Colony Creek on Monday morning.
The journey back to the golf course, however, has not been easy. Growing up, Koenig played all the time. When she joined the golf team at UHV, high school was the last time she had competed competitively.
When she found out about UHV's program, she called golf coach Brian Williamson to see about a chance to be on the team as a walk-on. He accepted after hearing about her previous experience.
Golf has been a game she enjoyed with her family, especially her father, Stanley. He was the one who got her hooked on the game and took her to golf camps when she was young.
"You meet good people playing golf. Golf is a game where you call penalties on yourself, which makes it a game of high integrity," her father said. "Over the course of your lifetime, golf will teach you a lot about yourself."
Williamson thinks Koenig has a lot of potential. She described herself as an athletic person but knows there's a lot more she can do.
"The physical side she has down, but the mental side she's improving," Williamson said. "She's improved in her scores and is approaching her potential. She's right on the cusp."
Koenig recalled being nervous the first time she took the course playing with experienced college players.
"I kept thinking, 'These girls will think I'm terrible,'" she said.
But it wasn't quite as rough as she thought. Williamson said he sees Koenig helping the team more as she gets better.
Being able to come back and play golf has been a humbling experience, Koenig said. While she majors in biology, she does keep golf in her thoughts for the future.
"If my senior year comes, and I shoot a 75 and lower, I would be interested in pursuing a pro career," she said. "It's like a second chance. I'm seeing how far I push myself."