Matthew Garside started his journey in golf over 12 years ago and immediately fell in love with the sport.
In those 12 years, Garside has fielded an impressive career. He won the 2016 Minnesota Junior PGA Championship and received multiple top ten finishes in American junior golf association competitions.
Garside moved to Bettendorf prior to the 2018 school year and was excited to join the golf team.
“My main goal was to get to meet everyone on the team and get to meet the coaches. When I first got here, I wasn't sure whether or not I would be able to play at the varsity level due to eligibility issues with the move from Minnesota to Iowa,” Garside said.
In his first practices at Bettendorf, his teammates were surprised by his golfing ability.
“Matthew is a phenomenal golfer. I had no idea how good he was the first time I played with him. He shot 5 under par and I thought to myself ‘this guy is pretty good,’” teammate Jonathan Berg said.
With Garside at the helm, Bettendorf golf finished second in the Mississippi Athletic Conference this past year.
“From an overall outlook, I thought that it was only an average season, but we were able to pull out a second place finish at conferences that we are proud of,” coach Katie Hansen said.
The success did not end at the conference meet for Garside. He qualified to compete as an individual in the 4A state golf competition, a two-day event spanning from Friday, Oct. 5, to Saturday, Oct 6.
On the morning of the first day, Garside met with coaches Hansen and Chris Like and discussed the possibility of the competition being cut down to one day.
“On Friday morning, we talked to him about the possibility of it being a one-day tournament. Due to this, Matthew decided that he would go out more aggressive and try to shoot a couple strokes lower,” Hansen said.
Garside did just that. In his first round of golf, he shot a 6-under 65. This hot start placed Garside in first among individuals in 4A after the first day.
On Saturday, Oct 6, Garside’s prediction became true as the second day of the tournament was canceled due to heavy rains.
Matthew Garside was named the Iowa 4A individual state champion. The 65 that he shot was the best state tournament 18-hole round since Clinton's Tyler Swanson shot a 65 in 2001.
He has committed to play golf and study accounting at the University of Iowa. After that, Garside says that the plan is to play professionally.