Georgia Miller, a Grade 11 student at Valleyview secondary, wants to play golf on a full-ride scholarship down south after high school. She placed second in the B.C. Golf Zone 2 Junior Tour Order of Merit standings.
Emma Sabbagh, one year older than Georgia Miller, will graduate from Kelowna Christian School and play golf on scholarship next season for the South Dakota Coyotes, an NCAA Division 1 program.
Miller, a 17-year-old Grade 11 student at Valleyview secondary, finished three strokes behind Sabbagh at the B.C. Golf Zone 2 Tour Championship at Gallagher’s Canyon Golf and Country Club on the weekend.
She would have been within striking distance of Sabbagh if it were not for an unfortunate double-bogey on Hole 17 in the final round on Sunday.
The point is Miller is nearly on par with an older female who has already inked a valuable golf scholarship — and the Kamloops wunderkind aims to soon snare one of her own.
“That’s the plan,” said Miller, who was on her way to practise at Predator Ridge in Vernon when she spoke to KTW on Wednesday. “I want to go to Arizona State for a full ride or anywhere that would give me a full ride.
“I chose golf over wrestling this year to focus more on it.”
Golf and wrestling are not similar, but they share at least one thing in common: Miller is really good at both of them.
She placed second in her weight class at the provincial high school wrestling championships earlier this year, but declined to go to nationals to mitigate risk of injury ahead of golf season.
At least three U Sports schools wanted Miller to grapple in their tights — Simon Fraser University, the University of Saskatchewan and the University of Manitoba.
“Golf is less stressful,” Miller said. “You can be yourself and have fun. I like to dress up in my golfwear and have fun meeting other people.
“It’s the smart way because in golf you can get a full ride. For girls’ wrestling, you can’t.”
Miller, a member at Predator and Rivershore Golf Links, shot 84 on Saturday and 85 on Sunday at the Zone 2 championship. Greens were lightning fast, said Miller, with Gallagher’s staff preparing the course for a Mackenzie Tour event this weekend.
“And it was pretty slow out there,” Miller said. “There were a lot of kids trying out for provincials.
“I thought I played really good, but my course management could have been a lot better. Sometimes you lose focus when you have to wait.”
Miller’s best score on tour this season was 77 on The Bear Course at Okanagan Golf Club in Kelowna on April 28. She finished second overall in the Order of Merit standings, trailing only Sabbagh.
Both golfers qualified to represent Zone 2 at the provincial junior golf championship, scheduled to run from July 3 to July 6 at Kimberley Golf Club.
The B.C. championship is one of about 14 tournaments that remain on Miller’s summer slate, including three south of the border, one each in Oregon, Idaho and California.
Showcasing her game in the U.S. may help her ink a letter of intent with an NCAA school.
“The first plan is to go to the LPGA after university golf if I’m good enough,” Miller said. “If I stop doing that, being a golf coach is my second idea.
“I want to help people when I get older.”