Created on Thursday, 25 April 2013 Written by AARON LaBATT
Whether it was determination in the classroom or on the golf course, Heather Comer has made a career of accomplishing her goals.
That hard work has paid off again as the Riverside standout prepares to take her golf game to Ohio Northern University.
She becomes the first female golfer at Riverside to play golf at the college level.
“I’ve played golf since fifth grade and it has always been a goal to be the first girl in Riverside school history to play in college,” said Comer. “I’ve worked hard during the summer. I played in a lot of tournaments against better girls, who were going to Division I schools. It challenged me and made me better prepared for college golf.”
Comer was the first girl in Riverside school history to advance to the district tournament, which she did last fall. She missed qualifying to the district tourney by one stroke the year before as a junior.
Just as impressive are her achievements in the classroom. She plans to major in clinical laboratory science. That was the biggest factor in her college decision.
“It had to be a perfect fit for academics first,” said Comer. “I liked their clinical laboratory science lab. After deciding on ONU, I talked to the golf coach and asked what kind of fit it would be for me in their program. It sounded like a perfect fit.”
“ONU is getting a golfer that wants to be the best she can be,” said RHS head coach Andy Phelps. “Heather is always working at making her game better. ONU is going to love her work ethic and attitude toward helping the program succeed.”
Comer had to work hard on the golf course to get noticed. The Northwest Central Conference, of which Riverside is a member, does not have a league for girls golf. Comer had to earn her recognition on her own.
“It was harder for me to prepare myself,” said Comer. “I had to be on top of my game more than the other girls. I didn’t get any special recognition to get noticed by college coaches. That just made me work 10 times harder to get my name out there.”
Comer was selected to the list of Ohio finalists for the prestigious Wendy’s High School Heisman Award this past fall. It recognizes outstanding high school seniors nationwide who excel in athletics, academics and community leadership. Only 20 prep athletes, 10 boys and 10 girls, from across the state were picked as finalists for the award. There were 2,040 applicants from Ohio.
Setting records and milestones means Comer will leave a big role to fill in the Riverside golf program.
“Heather has meant a ton to Riverside,” said Phelps. “Not only playing golf, but leading on and off the golf course. A lot of younger girls look up to Heather on the golf course, but also at school as well.
“She has helped keep the girls program going and has been the leader of the girls team for the past four years. She will be greatly missed on the golf course, but also around the school building as well.”