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Athlete of the week: Erika Holmberg

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Athlete of the week: Erika Holmberg

Erika Holmberg, number one player on the PV Girls’ Golf team, swings at the ball on Hole 22 at Hidden Hills Golf Course.

Erika Holmberg, number one player on the PV Girls’ Golf team, swings at the ball on Hole 22 at Hidden Hills Golf Course.

Photo taken by Lilly Parker

Erika Holmberg, number one player on the PV Girls’ Golf team, swings at the ball on Hole 22 at Hidden Hills Golf Course.

Photo taken by Lilly Parker

Photo taken by Lilly Parker

Erika Holmberg, number one player on the PV Girls’ Golf team, swings at the ball on Hole 22 at Hidden Hills Golf Course.

Lilly Parker, Copy Editor

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Although she only stands at 5’ 3” and is at the bottom of the high school “food chain” freshman, Erika Holmberg dreams of a future larger than life. Not only is she the number one player on the PV Girls’ Golf team, she has also immersed herself in a multitude of other activities.

Holmberg focuses most of her time on improving her already superior golf game, filling the rest of her day with eleven other extracurriculars. They include choir, band, Spartan Assembly, Drama Club, and many more. Despite being involved in so many endeavors, she gives maximum effort and excels in each one while still having leftover energy to make PV’s top Honor Roll.

However, the majority of Holmberg’s passion goes towards watching, practicing, and playing golf; she has been doing just that ever since she was five years old. Holmberg attributes her ongoing golf success to her sheer love of the game and the people who have inspired her to do her best every day. “Having the drive and willingness to achieve great things and enjoy what you do is an important part of reaching my goals,” she said.

Not only is she achieving unimaginable feats on Pleasant Valley’s varsity golf team, she has been traveling and playing tournaments with Iowa’s PGA Junior Tour for the past five years. This opportunity has allowed Holmberg to challenge herself individually and see where she stands amongst other players on a state-wide basis.

In 2017 she finished in second place for her age group in all of Iowa and Western Illinois. This win heightened her reputation as an accomplished golfer and solidified her goal to make it to State and place in the top ten individually. However, Holmberg prides herself on being a team player and hopes the high school team can win the MAC and go to State, as well.

Mike Nedelcoff, this season’s PV’s Girls’ Golf coach, is looking forward to working with Holmberg and integrating this year’s motto, “better everyday”, to help her achieve her full potential. A skill setting Holmberg apart from her other teammates is not only her outstanding low scores, but the mental side of her game.

Throughout his 35 years of coaching, Nedelcoff has tried to teach about the importance of level-headedness while golfing. “Her even demeanor and determination allows her to persevere on the golf course when others may find the challenge too much to handle,” said Nedelcoff. In golf, it’s important to maintain a steady head. One can’t be too happy after a good hole and too angry after a bad hole.

Because of Holmberg’s composed demeanor on the course, Nedelcoff has realized the importance of using lessons learned from other activities to improve all aspects of one’s success in their sport. “What I, as coach, appreciate is the fact she is also a fine musician. This has helped teach her patience and precision which are definitely helpful with her golf game,” he said.

Although Holmberg’s goal is to turn her dream of going to State into a reality, golf is a rollercoaster of a sport; even professional players have bad rounds. “Ultimately I would just like to shoot consistently low scores and have a fun time with my fellow teammates,” she said. To accomplish this goal, Holmberg will continue looking up to golfers like Phil Mickelson and Kevin Chappell who inspire her to be positive and work hard.

Her advice to young athletes in pursuit of the next level of competition is to continually renew their passion for the sport and practice as much as possible. “You have to be committed to what you’re doing,” Holmberg said. “Have a goal, put in the effort, and you can accomplish anything.” Keep an eye out for Holmberg as she makes her varsity debut this season because, with her work ethic, her teammates believe she is on her way to accomplishing incredible things both on and off the golf course.

About the Writer
Lilly Parker, Copy Editor

My name is Lilly Parker and I am a Copy Editor for the Spartan Shield online. I am a senior at Pleasant Valley High School, and in the past four years...

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Athlete of the week: Erika Holmberg