Aleya Peete had been taking a bit of a break from golfing, but that is about to change.

The daughter of former PGA Tour player Calvin Peete started taking golf lessons when she was 10 years old and went on to play four years at Delaware State before earning a master's degree in art education from Ohio State this spring.

Beginning this fall, Peete will see the sport from another perspective, as she has been named girls golf coach at Hilliard Bradley.

"When I came to graduate school at Ohio State, I didn't even bring a set of clubs with me," said Peete, who will be a head coach for the first time. "After eight to 10 years of competitive golf, I needed a break. My mother (Pepper Peete) is coming over to Columbus, and she'll bring my clubs then."

Peete, 23, replaces Chuck Burkhart, who stepped down after two seasons.

"Aleya is young, but she has a lot going for her and is excited for the experience," athletics director Nick Van Dyne said. "She knows golf and is mature beyond her years.

"Coach Burkhart resigned in early June and said he didn't have the time necessary to give the girls the time they deserved. He did a great job for us."

Peete said she learned so much about golf and life from her father, who died in 2015 at age 71.

"I have always been around golf and probably have been around the driving ranges and putting greens since I could walk," she said. "It's always been a big part of my life with my father and mother playing, my maternal grandmother and two maternal uncles also playing.

"(My father) always was stressing the mental game and staying mentally active and involved on the course. He would say that you always have to look forward and forget about your bad holes. You need to put them behind you."

Before being named the Jaguars' coach, Peete was hired by the school district as a teacher. She will teach art at Darby Elementary.

Burkhart had just resigned and suggested that she apply for his former post.

"I didn't expect to coach so quickly, but I always had hoped for that," Peete said. "My dream was to be both (a teacher and coach), so when the opportunity presented itself, I jumped at it.

"I never have coached a team, per se, but I have been a captain in high school (in Ponte Vedra Beach, Florida) and in college. I also have been around The First Tee program all of my life, helping younger kids learn the game."

Last year, Bradley finished fourth (14-12) in the four-round OCC-Cardinal Division tournament behind champion Dublin Jerome (26-0). This fall, the Jaguars will begin competing in the OCC-Central with Davidson, Dublin Coffman, Olentangy Liberty, Olentangy Orange and Upper Arlington.

Rising seniors Callie Hribar, April Parkin and Allie Waggener are expected to be key returnees for the Jaguars.

Peete is excited to meet the members of her team and begin preparation for the season. She said she will come into the program as a listener.

"I will allow players to tell me what they need from me as a coach," she said. "Golf is an individual sport and I will individualize my help toward each golfer."

shennen@thisweeknews.com

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