Julia Johnson poses with the SEC Championship trophy which her and her teammates procured this past season. This was the first SEC Championship ever won in the history of Ole Miss Women’s Golf. (Photo courtesy of Julia Johnson)
After a brilliant freshman campaign, Pine Prairie native and current Ole Miss sophomore, Julia Johnson, proved this past season that knowledge is the key to even greater success.
After all was said and done in 2018-2019, Johnson had capped off her second year with another selection to the All-Southeastern Conference team and a piece of the SEC team title; the first team title in Ole Miss history.
Johnson, a second place finisher at the SEC Championships, became only the third Lady Rebel to be named to multiple all-conference teams. She was the team’s top finisher in seven of the 14 matches that she participated in this season and led the team in stroke average this year and rounds under par.
When asked, Johnson pointed to two major reasons for her tremendous second year on the links for the Lady Rebels.
“I felt like I had way more balance in my life this season,” stated Johnson. “Having that one year under me gave me the ease to know what I needed to do to get things accomplished. For instance, even though I took 18 hours this past semester, I think I slept 10 times more than last year.”
“We also hired a new assistant coach (Zach Byrd) between semesters that really made a big differnce in all of our play,” Johnson continued. “He played professionally and came in with some incredible knowledge and energy. I think having him around was a huge part of the success of the team this year.”
Johnson also noted that even though the team’s year ended on a high note after winning conference and qualifying for the National Tournament, things did not look right in the fall for the young Ole Miss squad.
“We did not look good in the fall as a whole,” commented Johnson. “But once the spring started it all began to fall in place. We played in the Dominican Republic in the Tar Heel Classic and beat some really good teams. From there we just took off and started to build some consistency. We just found our stride at the right time.”
Speaking of consistency, Johnson’s play througout the seaon was the epitome of what consistency should be. In 37 rounds of golf, Johnson struck the ball 2,707 times for a stroke average of 73.17. Johnson also fired a career low 66 in the final round of the Ron Moore Women’s Intercollegiate.
“I thought my spring went really well,” said Johnson. “I played pretty steady and was in contention to win the SEC. I just tried to go out and do what I could to help the team.”
“Still, I was not wholly pleased, but I am always trying to get better,” Johnson continued. “That just motivates me to become a better golfer for the team and myself.”
Despite all of the golf played this past year, Johnson will still get in a couple of tournaments over the summer. She is planning to play in the US Amateur qualifier in July and the North/South Amateur at Pinehurst also slated for July.
“I am not going to play full slate of tournaments like I did last summer,” stated Johnson. “I just want to relax and take it easier this summer and come back fully rested.”