POTOMAC, Md. — Kendall Jackson has been playing golf most of her life and knows a thing or two about conquering some of the toughest courses, including TPC Potomac at Avenel Farm where the Wells Fargo Championship will be played on May 4.
WUSA9 invited the Howard University freshman to join three members of our team on the links to offer a few pointers. Some of the crew needed her pointers more than others.
"I hit it into one sand trap, and then I hit from that sand trap into the other sand trap," Chief Investigative Reporter Eric Flack said, describing his golf outing. "And then I went from that sand trap into the other sand trap, at which point I just picked up the ball. It's only the first hole!"
To be fair, Flack only purchased his first set of golf clubs two days ago. He wouldn't call himself an "experienced golfer" and welcomed any advice Jackson could give him.
“Not only do you have to factor in what line you want to start on, you have to factor in the speed, and these are some very fast greens," Jackson said. "I'm definitely focused on the elevation change. It's going to be an uphill putt coming from over there."
Jackson came to D.C. from Houston, where she began playing golf as a 6-year-old child, inspired by Tiger Woods. Jackson said she now has dreams of inspiring more people who look like she does to play the sport.
"There weren't a lot of females playing growing up, let alone black females," Jackson said. "That’s one of the main reasons I came to Howard, to play with other black women. I truly want to inspire not just black people into golf, but because black women make up less than 1% in the golf industry as a whole, so I just invite more people to do it, and that would be amazing for sure."
Jackson took command from the first hole and the WUSA9 trio followed. Chief Meteorologist Topper Shutt and Sports Director Darren Haynes seemed to be able to handle themselves on the Par-70 course. But Flack was open to any and all assistance.
“Keep your head steady, not down, and watch the club hit the ball, then stay focused and stay positive," Jackson offered, coaching Flack. "I see potential."
Jackson was joined on the course by Howard University assistant coach Airielle Dawson.
"She inspires me to be a better coach," Dawson said. "I want to help her reach her dreams and however I can help her do that, is what I’m here to do."
Jackson said she hopes to one day take her talent to the professional level and be a part of the LPGA Tour. Until then, she'll continue to be a student of the game -- and a pretty good teacher, too.
“I think she gave really good advice [to the WUSA9 foursome]," Dawson joked. "And they needed it too!"