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Pod for the Course

Sports & Recreation Podcasts

Pod for the Course is the official podcast of Washington Golf. From discussions with local professionals to conversations with college golf coaches, we peel the curtain back and shed light on the people in the golf community who make golf in Washington so great.

Pod for the Course is the official podcast of Washington Golf. From discussions with local professionals to conversations with college golf coaches, we peel the curtain back and shed light on the people in the golf community who make golf in Washington so great.


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Pod for the Course is the official podcast of Washington Golf. From discussions with local professionals to conversations with college golf coaches, we peel the curtain back and shed light on the people in the golf community who make golf in Washington so great.








Durel Billy (aka: “Billy Bogey”) – Board member, knicker-wearing hickory lover, golf dreamer

Not picking up a golf club until the age of 30, Durel Billy found himself going all in on the game, determined to get better. And then he discovered hickory golf, causing him to delve deeper into the history of the game, inspired by his discovery of John Shippen being the first U.S.-born professional and also an African American. In 2013, Durel founded the Atlantic Pacific National Golf Club, providing an outlet for friends, old and new, to play regular events together. Durel then revived...


Austin Hurt – 2009 Washington Men’s Amateur champion and PGA Championship participant

Austin Hurt shot 81 (this is not a misprint) in the first round of the 2009 Washington Men’s Amateur while suffering an eye allergy that sent him to the hospital after the round. The championship that year was held at his home course of Palouse Ridge Golf Club in Pullman, Wash. But he then shot 69 in the second round to make the cut. And although he shot another 69 in the third round, he still began the final round a mountainous nine strokes behind the leader. In that final round, Hurt shot...


Sharon Johnston – Past president of WA Golf and the WSWGA talks about her journey from the sideline to the headline

When Sharon Johnston started playing golf in 1975, she went all in, both on and off the course. A natural athlete, she began competing almost immediately. As a member of Fircrest Golf Club, she became involved with the Washington State Women’s Golf Association (WSWGA), and in 1984 served as its president. In 1998, she would win the WSWGA Championship, adding her name to a list of prominent champions. She competed in the inaugural Washington Women’s Amateur in 1994. She soon became involved...


Mike Riste – region’s foremost golf historian talks centennials and more

Mike Riste serves as the historian for the BC Golf Museum, and is the official historian for the PNGA. He assembled the initial research for “Washington Golf: 100 Years of Growing the Game,” the centennial history book of Washington Golf, published in 2022. Mike may claim he is not a writer, but his body of work is substantial. He co-authored the monumental “Championships & Friendships,” the centennial history book of the Pacific Northwest Golf Association (PNGA); and wrote “Just Call Me...


Ann Swanson – Hall of famer, golf historian, and champion talks history of the game in Washington

In 2010, Ann Swanson knew she was in line to become president of the Washington State Women’s Golf Association (WSWGA) in 2012. So in preparation, she went all-in by writing and publishing a book about the 90-year history of the WSWGA. Founded in 1922, the WSWGA is celebrating its centennial in 2022, along with WA Golf’s centennial in 2022. Ann twice won the Washington Senior Women’s Amateur (2000-2001), won the WSWGA Championship nine times (and was runner-up nine times), and won the...


Jeff Wallach - Golf Journalist and Author

Jeff Wallach has published his new novel, Everyone Here is From Somewhere Else, the follow-up to his novel Mr. Wizard, and continues to chronicle the journey of two brothers who discover they have Irish heritage and set off in search of links golf, Guinness, and themselves. Wallach, who lives in Portland, Ore., is the author of five non-fiction books and two novels, as well as nearly 1,000 articles, essays, reviews, and columns in The New York Times, The Oregonian, Sports Illustrated, and...


Dan Raley – author of the centennial history book, “Washington Golf – 100 years of growing the game”

WA Golf is celebrating its centennial history in 2022, and among the year’s festivities is the publication of a history book, which is authored by Dan Raley. In this podcast, Raley talks about the people he interviewed, the unknown facts he discovered, and the final thoughts he came to, during his 18 months in writing the book.


Sean Kato – Last year’s Washington Men’s Amateur champion will attempt to defend his title

Sean Kato went wire-to-wire in winning last year’s Washington Men’s Amateur and returns this year to defend his title in the 100th Washington Men’s Amateur, to be held July 6-8 on the Olympic Course at Gold Mountain GC in Bremerton, Wash. Sean is entering his fourth year on the men’s golf team at Oregon State University, but because of a shoulder injury and the 2020 season canceled due to COVID-19, he still has two years of eligibility remaining. Prior to enrolling at Oregon State, Sean...


Caroline Matelski – the first state champion finds her way back to the game

The first Washington Women’s Amateur Championship was held in 1994 at Twin Lakes Golf and Country Club in Federal Way. Caroline Speigelberg (now Matelski), who at the time was playing on the University of Washington women’s golf team, had set a goal of having her name be the first one engraved on the new trophy – and she came away with a two-shot victory. After college, she played professionally for a couple years, but soon regained her amateur status and, admittedly burned out, eventually...


Cathy Kim – former WWU player named Golf Digest’s “Best Young Teachers”

Cathy Kim was recently named one of Golf Digest’s “Best Young Teachers” for 2021-22. She is a dual member of the PGA of America and the LPGA. She attended Skyline High School in Sammamish, Wash. and then received a full-ride scholarship to attend Western Washington University, where she played four years on the women’s golf team (2005-2008). During her collegiate years, she played in two Washington Women’s Amateurs. She has worked as an instructor at Sahalee Country Club in Sammamish and TPC...


Gabby Lemieux – former Idaho state champion is making her way to the LPGA Tour

Originally from Caldwell, Idaho, Gabby Lemieux is a three-time Idaho Women’s State Amateur champion who won four individual titles while playing on the women’s golf team at Texas Tech University, where she was named the 2016 Player of the Year in the Big 12 Conference and was the No. 1-ranked player in the country. Now making her way as a professional on the Symetra Tour, which is the developmental tour for the LPGA, Gabby will be playing in the Circling Raven Championship on Aug. 27-29 in...


Notah Begay III – the long and winding road leads to creating opportunities for others

At age nine, Notah asked the head pro at the local muni in Albuquerque, N.M. for a job. He worked for free in exchange for the chance to practice and play at the course (“I was a bad negotiator.”). A full-blooded Native American (Navajo, San Felipe, Isleta), he soon became the No. 1-ranked junior player in the country, and earned a golf scholarship to Stanford University, where his team won an NCAA national title, and was a teammate of Tiger Woods. Notah won four times on the PGA Tour, then...


Tom Stebbins talks golf shows in Spokane and Boise under the COVID umbrella

Prior to founding Vision Marketing in 1997, Tom was the assistant athletic director for marketing and promotions at Michigan State University Athletics and marketing director at Washington State University Athletics. He and his wife Karen are the owners and producers of the Spokane Golf & Travel Show and Boise Golf & Travel Show, and have continued to find creative ways in conducting their events in challenging circumstances, finding a way forward.


Bryan Pierce – Caddie Master at Chambers Bay talks Adam Scott, kids earning an Evans Caddie Scholarship, and his own love of the game

Since 2010, Bryan has worked at Chambers Bay in University Place, Wash. in a variety of capacities, and now is the director of on-course services at the municipal course on the shores of Puget Sound. Specifically, he is the facility’s caddie master, managing the fleet of caddies who service the walking-only course. He talks of his own love of working as a caddie, of his experience of caddying for Adam Scott while practicing for the 2015 U.S. Open, of helping young kids learn to be a caddie...


Victoria Fallgren – Sharpening her own game while coaching others at Gonzaga University

Since 2013 Victoria Fallgren has been the assistant coach for the women’s golf team at Gonzaga University in Spokane, Wash. Prior to that she played four years on the Gonzaga team. She has won the Washington Women’s Mid-Amateur Championship three times (2017, 2018, 2020) and was twice named the Washington Golf Women’s Mid-Amateur Player of the Year (2017, 2018). She has qualified for three U.S. Women’s Amateur Public Links and two U.S. Women’s Amateurs. She talks with us about how she keeps...


Josh Williams – the GM at Loomis Trail talks border closure

Josh Williams is the general manager of Loomis Trail Golf Club in Blaine, Wash. The course is located five miles south of the U.S.-Canada border, and since March 21, 2020 that border has been closed to “non-essential” travel because of COVID-19, which means no British Columbia golfers are allowed to come down and play any of the many courses in Washington. Josh talks about the impact of this on his and other area courses, and what they’re doing to adjust.


Dustin White – WSU men’s golf coach talks recruitment and motivation in the era of COVID

A Cougar through and through, Dustin White returned to his alma mater as an assistant coach in the January of 2014 and was named the Washington State men’s golf head coach prior to the 2016-17 season. White was a standout player for the Cougars golf team from 1999-2003. He was a three-time All-Pac-10 selection, including a first team honoree in 2002. As a professional, he was a winner on the Gateway Tour in 2004, 2006 and 2007, and competed on the Nationwide Tour in 2005, 2009 and 2010. His...


Zac Keener - General Manager of Chambers Bay

Zac has been at Chambers Bay in University Place, Wash. since 2007. He served as their Assistant PGA Professional from 2007-2015, then as the facility’s sales and marketing manager for a year and a half, then director of marketing for a year before adding “assistant general manager” to his title. He took over as general manager in November 2018. The club has been the site of the 2010 U.S. Amateur, 2015 U.S. Open, and, along with numerous other local and regional championships (including the...


Erin Szekely - LPGA Life Member, golf coach, director of NW Women’s Open

Erin didn’t pick up the game of golf until age 35, but then she went all in. She became a six-time club champion at Snohomish (Wash.) GC, and turned pro in 1996, competing on mini-tours throughout the U.S., winning the senior title of the 2003 Colorado Women’s Open. She became a member of the LPGA Teaching & Club Professionals (and is now a Life Member), was a founder and director of the Washington State Women’s Open, and is currently the director of the annual Northwest Women’s Open. She is...


Tyler Johnsen - Re-starting the WJGA Season

Tyler Johnsen, executive director of the Washington Junior Golf Association, talks about the re-start of the WJGA’s 2020 tournament season, the junior golfers’ enthusiasm for getting back out on the course, and the steps that he’s taking for making sure everyone has a safe and enjoyable championship experience.