Ambitious senior aspires to play professional golf


  Sheridan High School has not only seen many great students pass through the halls, but has also seen a number of athletes as well. There are many qualities that make both students and athletes great, such as determination, integrity, and motivation. Some people, like senior Kirby Coe-Kirkham, have used admirable attributes and become both amazing students and fantastic athletes. Coe-Kirkham is an avid golfer and has done well in competitions not only at the high school level but in other tournaments as well.

  Coe-Kirkham began playing golf around first grade. One of his friends at the time was a golf enthusiast and was able to pique Coe-Kirkham’s interest about the game. He asked his father to take him to the driving range and realized that he had an absolute knack for playing the sport. “I started when I was about seven or eight years old,” said Coe-Kirkham. “I just had a natural gift for it. I was hitting the ball even on my first time out. It all kind of started from there.”

  Like most athletes, Coe-Kirkham understood that he wasn’t going to get better without putting time and effort into his golf game. After he discovered that he had a gift for playing the game, he decided to use it and began practicing to get better and better. “Once I determined that I was pretty good at it and that I really like it, I had the idea that I could get better all the time,” said Coe-Kirkham. “From there, I just started practicing every now and then and just kept getting better.”

  By the time Coe-Kirkham was about twelve years old, he had begun to play in golf tournaments across the state of Wyoming. His first tournament was a Wyoming state junior tournament that allowed kids from Wyoming to compete against other kids from the state. “I was just up against a lot of Sheridan juniors,” said Coe-Kirkham. “I don’t remember how I did or what I did, but I just know that it was fun and I’ve played in a lot of tournaments since then.”

  The Wyoming State Golf Association (WSGA) puts on tournaments every year across the state of Wyoming. There are people from around the state who come to compete against one another. “I usually played against the same people and guys and just went all over the state,” said Coe-Kirkham. “I think that first place got fifty bucks in club-shop credit, so it wasn’t for anything except competing and seeing how good I could get.”

  Competition is a motivating factor for many athletes and is certainly something that motivates Coe-Kirkham. “I’m a competitive guy, so just the idea that I could beat people in golf just drove me,” said Coe-Kirkham. Many people do not think of golf as a competitive game. There’s a certain air about it having no competition, however, as Coe-Kirkham said, “You can compete against yourself, you can compete against the course, and once you get good enough to play in tournaments, I’m competing against other people and it’s fun.” said Coe-Kirkham that he loves the idea of getting better and improving himself to become a better competitor.

  Coe-Kirkham started playing golf for the Sheridan Broncs in his freshman year. Although he said that it didn’t go as well as he would have liked, said Coe-Kirkham that he enjoyed his first year on the Broncs golf team. Going into his high school golf career, Coe-Kirkham set the goal of all-stating his freshman, sophomore, junior, and senior years. “It didn’t go as good as I wanted it to because I missed all-state by just one stroke,” said Coe-Kirkham. “But even though I was off by a stroke, I still really enjoyed it. I think I got a real taste for how good I could be my freshman year and how good all of the other kids already were.”  Now, in his senior year, said Coe-Kirkham that he has enjoyed the team aspect of high school golf. said Coe-Kirkham that he gets bored when he plays in tournaments where he does not know many of the other competitors and prefers the team environment because he makes friends from all across the state, and he can enjoy being laid back and playing golf for the enjoyment.

  As his high school golf career comes to an end, Coe-Kirkham has been recognized for and has won multiple awards for his achievements in the sport. At the end of the 2017 fall season, Coe-Kirkham won the Lew Lepore award for having the best scoring average in the state overall. He considers this award to be the one that he is most proud of. “Even though I didn’t win state, I still had the best scoring average in the state,” said Coe-Kirkham. He also received the WSGA Junior Male Player. This award goes to individuals who are not only extraordinary golfers, but who are people that represent themselves well in all aspects of their lives.

  Coe-Kirkham plans on going to the University of Wyoming and continuing to play golf for their team. Past college, Coe-Kirkham aspires to try at least going pro.

  Something that said Coe-Kirkham he is extremely thankful for is the support he has received from both his parents and the community throughout his golfing career. He said they have never let him down, and he has always been able to count on them.

  Kirby is the son of Tracy Coe and Mark Kirkham.