Golf and basketball are at the opposite ends of the spectrum when it comes to fan interraction.
In golf, there may be just a few people around and silence is encouraged.
In basketball, fans may just be feet away from the court and noise is encouraged.
Ayden Richmond plays both sports for Geneva.
He is in basketball mode now, but just about a month ago, the senior was seeking a state trip in golf.
Richmond didn’t achieve that goal, but he had a stellar season, and was selected county boys golfer of the year for the 2021 season.
“It’s exciting,” he said of the honor. “I put a lot of hard work in, and it’s nice that it paid off.”
Richmond’s highlights in the 2021 season included wins at the Karl Pearson Invitational, the Chagrin Valley Conference Valley Division preseason and postseason tournaments and the Ursuline Invitational in Youngstown.
Each tournament win was special, but the crown jewel was in Youngstown.
He fired a career-best 69 over 18 holes, shooting sides of 34 and 35.
“I started on No. 14 with a birdie and birdied the first two holes, and then there was a difficult Par 3,” Richmond said. “I kept it in the greens, and was putting well.”
Richmond said he tries to stay positive on the course, even when things aren’t going well.
“You can be off on one hole, then be on the next,” he said. “Once you figure it out, it’s a whole different round. I know I can always get back on track. You always learn something from each round.”
Richmond opened the season with a 74 over 18 holes for a CVC Valley Division preseason tournament win. He claimed the top spot with a 36 in the nine-hole Karl Pearson Invitational and closed the regular season with an 80 for a win in the CVC postseason tournament.
Richmond leaves Geneva as a two-time district quaifier. He reached that level as an individual in his junior season and with the Eagles this fall.
“That was so much fan,” he said of this season. “I love the team. It’s always fun and competitive.”
Both the Eagles and Richmond fell short of a state appearance.
But Richmond carded a 75, which was one shot away from potentially qualifying as an individual.
“I didn’t putt too well,” he said. “I thought I did, but the ball would turn or lip out. It was just one of those days.”
A soccer player growing up, Richmond took up golf just two weeks prior to his freshman season.
“I wanted to try something new and see how I could do,” he said.
Richmond progressed in his short time of playing.
“There was a lot of hard work on the course,” he said. “I’d like to thank my coaches and swing coach John Jones. The people at Madison Country Club have been great. I’m glad I made the decision to switch.”
On the court, Richmond, who was a Division II third-team Northeast Lakes All-District choice last season, is excited for the upcoming basketball season.
“We have some good additions,” he said. “I hope we can have spectators back, and have a fun season.”
But, even though it’s a new sport and the weather will start to turn cold and snowy, golf isn’t too far away from Richmond’s mind.
“There are some indoor facilities around,” he said. “I want to continue with [golf] in college. I’m excited to see what’s next.”
He has an educational interest in financial planning.