C. Milton Wright alum Jordan Nichols uses her soccer skills in footgolf, a sport she fell in love with and plays extremely well – Baltimore Sun
Jordan Nichols loves football, the sport she has been playing for many years. Golf, however, not so much.
Combine the two sports and you have Footgolf, a booming sport that Nichols simply fell in love with. And she’s really good at it too.
Nichols, a 2017 graduate of C. Milton Wright and a 2021 graduate of the University of New Haven, played football at both schools, until she couldn’t anymore.
“So I had a bunch of concussions that ended my football career during my senior season, well, kind of a senior season because it was canceled by COVID. We had a few scrums and that was my last concussion,” Nichols said. “My coach was like, yeah, you can’t do this anymore, but I still wanted to stay competitive somehow and I got an internship at Morphius Records in Baltimore and label owner David Andler , asked me if I played football.”
Nichols of course said yes and the two talked about football and Andler asked if Nichols had ever tried Footgolf and she quickly replied “never heard of it”.
“Always up for trying new things, so he took me out and we played and I fell in love with it,” Nichols said. “I was a central midfielder so a lot of my strengths were distribution skills, long balls with precision, that just translated into the sport.”
Thus, the journey began.
“He convinced me to go to the national championship and that’s where it all kind of started.”
Nichols’ Footgolf debut began in August of last year and it was in November that she stunned herself and her opponents at the national championship in Reidsville, Georgia.
“When I went to the national championship, it was a three-round tournament and it was like my fifth time playing. I was not confident at all,” Nichols said. Many women had been playing for years and Nichols thought she would lose a lot.
“I went out to have fun and see what happens and at the end of day one I was third. That’s when my confidence started to go up a bit,” Nichols said. that maybe I could win that and then at the end of the third day I was first, so.”
It wasn’t so easy, however, as Nichols was part of a three-way tie, which means extra playoff holes. “We all tied the first hole and the second hole, I birdied and they pared and bogeyed,” Nichols recalled. “I made a 12-yard putt with my foot.”
And with that, Nichols was hooked. The win earned him a spot on the U.S. national soccer team.
Most recently, Nichols took part in two major American football competitions in Orlando, Florida in late May.
At the Palm Golf Course at Walt Disney World, Nichols competed in the US Open and came away with a very respectable second place finish. Nichols (plus 10) finished behind one of the best players in the world, Claire Williams (plus 6) of England.
Nichols also competed for the United States in the Jansen Cup, named after Michael Jansen, the founder of Footgolf. The tournament runs parallel to the PGA Ryder Cup, a competition between the UK national team and the US national team.
Jordan stepped up and won 5 out of 5 sets for the US National Team, helping them win the Jansen Cup for the very first time.
“We played best ball, four ball games in the morning, then alternate shot games in the afternoon,” Nichols said. This game lasted two days and the final round, a third day, was singles matches. Nichols’ partner was Jo Reid of Alaska, the 2019 US national champion.
Nichols says her next big tournament is the national championship in November, where she will defend her title. Nichols is also looking forward to next May, which brings her back to Orlando for the US Open and a World Cup berth. “I just found out the other day that I got automatic qualification for the World Cup team. I can’t wait to be there,” Nichols said. qualified for the World Cup squad and it’s going to be huge, there will be 3,000 players there.”
In Orlando last month, Nichols says she threw the ball 13 miles in nine game turns.
Until then, Nichols will train, which she says she does four times a week. The Chesapeake Bay-Rising Sun Golf Course is the only truly local course that offers footgolf. “Try to go as much as possible,” she said. “You have to watch out for flying golf balls.” Nichols also does gym, stretching and lots of yoga.
Nichols, who resides in Aberdeen, also plays other courses in Baltimore and Silver Spring where she attends Aberdeen High School to work on driving techniques and she even practices in her own backyard.
Nichols, now 22, is excited about the future and Footgolf. “I have the opportunity, a lot of people who play this sport are older, in their 30s, 40s. I have the opportunity to still be young and to be an ambassador for the sport, to help develop sport and technically, as long as I stay healthy, I have a 30-year career ahead of me,” Nichols said. “I have the opportunity to improve myself more and more, to help develop the sport and finally hopefully in 10 years we will be playing a real touring style like golf and our travels are covered, the prize money is much better. There are tournaments all over the world and I would love to travel, but at 22 years old and a bartender, it’s hard to find the funds.
As well as being a bartender at MacGregor’s Restaurant in Havre de Grace, Nichols also provides freelance video editing for the label, Elle Deejays, hosts karaoke nights and has now landed an assistant coaching job with a Baltimore Celtic women’s soccer team. 2006.