Reagan’s class of 2012, Val Almendarez, had success with Rattler Golf with a career average of 74 and earned both his varsity letters and Academic All-State his junior and senior years. He took his passion for golf to the next level at Houston Baptist University (HBU). Although he’s graduated and is working professionally for Lockheed Martin now, he shared his golf journey and advice with us.
Q: When did you start golfing and what interested you in the sport?
A: I started when I was 6 years old and got interested because I saw my family playing and knew it was a sport I could play for life.
Q: What made you decide to play golf in college for HBU?
A: My goal was to always play college golf. I worked hard everyday to achieve that goal and being able to play Division I golf was a dream come true (the scholarship was also a nice bonus).
Q: What were your your most memorable moments at HBU?
A: Being top 5 in the University of Colorado’s tournament at Boulder Country Club, going to a 6 hole playoff at my conference championship, and making the All Conference team in 2017.
Q: What was the biggest difference between playing high school and college sports?
A: Golf became more of a job, than a hobby. I was there to get a job done and make my university proud.
Q: What were your favorite memories from Reagan Golf?
A: Traveling around Texas with my team. Playing well at the Bart Granger tournament in 2013. Winning District as a team. Going to 3 playoff holes for the District Championship individually in 2013.
Q: Now that you’ve graduated, what type of work are you doing and do you still have time to golf?
A: I work at Lockheed Martin in Aerospace Supply Chain. I have been “retired” from golf for about 20 months but am just getting back into recreational golf.
Q: What is your message to Rattlers thinking about competing at the next level?
A: You can achieve as much as you are willing to put in. College coaches look at your work ethic in the classroom as well as playing your sport, so take both areas serious. If you want to play at the college level, realize that it is a lifestyle you need to commit multiple hours a day to perfect your sport.
Thanks Val for sharing your experiences and advice with us. We’re wishing you all the best in your career!