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College golf: North Hall graduate Bartley Forrester coming on strong in career for Georgia Tech
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Georgia Tech's Bartley Forrester, a North Hall High graduate, watches his shot during the NCAA championships May 30, 2022 in Scottsdale, Ariz. Photo courtesy Tim Cowie Todd Drexler Photographer

Georgia Tech’s Bartley Forrester picked a great time to play some of his best golf. 

Coming down the final stretch of the last round of the NCAA golf championships, the North Hall High graduate seemed to put it all together Monday in Scottsdale, Arizona. 

Starting with a birdie on No. 15, Forrester would go under par on 3 of his final 4 holes to close out his stellar fourth round at 2-under par (68) at the challenging GrayHawk Golf Club.

Forrester, who carded the lowest overall score in the final round, finished the four-day haul at 6-over par and was 15th overall, earning a spot on the All-American list. 

It’s the same course where the fourth-year junior struggled to make shots consistently in the 2021 championships. 

This time around, however, he was ready to put it all together. 

“To see how far I’ve come in a year is pretty gratifying,” Forrester said. “The long hours of hard work are paying off with concrete results.”

Every bit of the final stretch was a clinic in being consistent for Forrester. 

On No. 15, he got up and down from off the green on the Par 3. 

Then on 17, he stuck his wedge shot from about 70 yards out to within 10 feet of the cup and made his putt for birdie. 

Forrester birdied No. 18 on each of the final two rounds. 

“The 18th hole was the hardest,” Forrester said. “I feel like I hit the ball really, really well. I put it in the fairways and greens.”

On Sunday, his 17-foot birdie putt on No. 18 kept the Yellow Jackets in the Top 15, advancing to the final day in the chase for the team championship. 

Georgia Tech finished tied for 12th overall with Georgia. 

And the team accomplishment is far more satisfying than individual accolades, for Forrester, who said that the Yellow Jackets will return all five starters next year. 

He said the team component is what makes playing college golf the most satisfying. 

Again, the national championships will be at Grayhawk in Scottsdale, Arizona, in 2023. 

“I’m pretty amped up to get next year going,” said Forrester, who is majoring in business administration. “We’re going to try our hardest to be the best team in the country.”

With the national championships going so well for Forrester, it was a fitting end to his best season in college, so far. 

In 2022, he won his second event of his career, going 5-under par to finish tied for first at the Calusa Cup on April 5 in Naples, Florida. 

Forrester, who was an All-ACC selection, also earned four Top-10 finishes this year for the Jackets. 

This season, for Forrester, took a turn in the right direction early in the spring at the Watersound Invitational in Panama City Beach, Fla. 

After going 3-over par on the first three holes in Round 1, Forrester figured it out fast and finished the day with a 1-under par 71. 

Following the three-round event, he tied for fourth overall with a cumulative score of 4-under par. 

This season was a stark contrast to how it was headed, in 2021, when he struggled to consistently put low scores on his card. 

As a redshirt freshman, in 2020, Forrester was starting to find a rhythm before the season was shut down, due to the pandemic. 

Then in 2021, his lack of good results started to weigh on Forrester mentally. 

However, he found a way to conquer those hurdles to have a stellar 2022 season. 

And, with one season left, the former Trojans standout hopes his best is yet to come. 

Eventually, Forrester would love to play on the PGA Tour. 

However, he’s not going to toil on the feeder circuits for years to try and earn a spot in the PGA. 

“I tell people that going pro is my Plan A, but I’m not dead set on that,” Forrester said. “Spots on the PGA Tour are slim pickings.”

Forrester knows a diploma from Georgia Tech will go a long way in the business world. 

Already, he’s been able to meet and greet some of Georgia Tech’s prominent alumni and athletics donors. 

Those connections will go a long way as a professional, having a concentration in the finance field. 

“Georgia Tech is such a great place,” Forrester said. “It’s not just the golf side. The education here opens up a lot of doors in the future.”


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