When it’s all over, Trey Shirley just wants to be remembered as a hard working, humble individual who cared more about his team than himself.
“It breaks my heart to lose Trey, he’s a heck of a player,” said CU Men’s Golf Coach Kenny Lawson.
“He’s a guy who has been a leader and my captain over the last two years. The way he plays and the way the guys look up to him, I’m just going to miss him. He’s an overall great person. He’s going to be hard to replace on the team and in the years to come I know I can look back and say that this kid played with his heart.”
Making his way to Campbellsville University after a brief stint with the Western Kentucky University Men’s Basketball Team, this Hilltopper turned Tiger has since made his mark on campus as a do-it-all athlete.
Shirley said he wasn’t happy with the way things were going at WKU and decided he wanted to play college golf instead. When many of his Metcalfe County High School friends chose CU, Shirley followed suit.
“I’ve been golfing since I was five,” Shirley said. “I like it because it is so challenging, it tests you both physically and mentally.”A good choice indeed, as this sports management major was named an National Christian College Athletic Association All-American in both his sophomore and junior years, and is on track to three-peat in his last year playing for Lawson.
But this two-time All-American doesn’t let the hype get to him on the course.
“I just focus on myself and the team,” Shirley said. “The rest just takes care of itself.”
His philosophy must be working because Shirley won his last home tournament on Sept. 18 at the Campbellsville Country Club.
Shirley placed first in CU’s annual fall tourney, the Mid-South Conference Fall Tournament/Don Bishop Invitational, for the second year in a row.
Shirley shot nine-under par with a score of 135 through two days in the rain and wind to seal the top spot. As a team, Campbellsville finished fourth.
“Being my senior year and since I won it last year as well, it’s always good to repeat as a champion,” Shirley said after the Sept. 18 tournament.
“It’s always hard to repeat in golf. But being my senior year and this being my last tournament I’ll ever play here, it’s pretty special to me. I’m just glad my team played good too.”
Taking into consideration that it was his last tournament at home, Shirley still picks the NCCAA Tournament as his favorite college tournament to play in.
Though a captain on the golf team, Shirley hasn’t completely given up hoops just yet. He has spent time on both the varsity and junior varsity men’s basketball teams at CU.
One of his better games, one might ask? A game-winning three-point basket at the buzzer, on the road, in a junior varsity game last spring at Lindsey Wilson College.
When asked what he preferred more: a buzzer-beating three or a tough putt to seal a win on the golf course, Shirley far from hesitated to pick the putt.
After college, Shirley plans on testing the waters in the world of paid-to-play golf and turn professional.
When asked who his favorite golfer was, Shirley answered with Tiger Woods. When the next question of favorite athlete was asked, Shirley grinned.
“Tiger Woods,” he said.
What does Shirley do when he’s not tearing it up on the golf course or embarrassing opponents on the hard wood?
There is a pretty good chance he is laid up at home, surrounded by his teammates all gathered around the TV. This die-hard Louisville Cardinal fan lives with teammate, and one of the most well known Kentucky basketball fans on campus, Ryan Flanagan.
“We’re fighting over the television and the remote all the time,” Shirley said behind a laugh.
“Regardless of sports, I’m watching it. But it never compares to Kentucky or something UK has done, with Ryan. As a Louisville fan, it’s annoying but fun.”
Wed, October 10, 2012
by Matthew Schmuck