Featured Player: Avery Zweig
Ranked No. 19 in AJGA rankings, 14-year-old Avery Zweig has had an exceptional start to the year with a win last month at the Diamond Resorts ANNIKA Invitational presented by Rolex. The victory was the Texan’s first AJGA title. The class of 2025 prospect has already competed in four USGA Championships and holds a handful of USGA age records. We caught up with Avery a few weeks after her win at World Golf Village to talk about how she picked up the game, her favorite memories and more.
What are three words that describe you as a person?
I would describe myself as kind, articulate and tenacious.
What is your favorite club in your bag?
My favorite club in my bag is my putter. Ever since I was little, I believed that there is no better sound in golf than the ball going into the hole.
What is one thing that no one knows about you?
One thing that no one knows about me is that I’m a huge “Swiftie”. My favorite pastime (when I’m not with my pets) is listening to Taylor Swift songs and analyzing the lyrics.
Who is your favorite golfer and why?
My favorite golfer has always been Brittany Lang. My family has known her for a while, and not only is she successful on the course, but she has also been very supportive of me and other young golfers over the years.
If you could play golf at any course in the world, what would it be?
If I could play at any golf course in the world, it would be Augusta National. I always watched the Masters growing up and it’s fantastic that I could one day have an opportunity to compete among the best at Augusta in the Augusta National Women’s Amateur.
If you could create a “dream foursome” with two professional golfers and one other person of your choice, who would you choose?
My dream foursome would consist of Ryan Reynolds, Phil Mickelson, Annika Sorenstam and myself. We’d do a girls vs. boys match. Actually, I would want to be sure to partner with Ryan Reynolds, so it would probably turn into a round robin.
If you could have any super power, what would it be and why?
If I could have a super power, it would be healing people or reading minds.
Who is your biggest role model and why?
My biggest role models are my family. No matter what, I know they will always support me and for that, I will always be grateful.
What is your greatest memory of playing golf so far?
At each step in my career there have been moments that shape who I am as a player and as a person. One memory that sticks out to me is when I won U.S. Kids Worlds when I was 12. After getting second in the event 5 out of 7 years, I finally won it. It was my last year to play in the tournament before I aged out, and I had the privilege of winning with one of my best friends by my side.
How old were you when you started playing golf and who taught you?
I was 2 years old when I started playing golf. My dad played almost everyday because he brought his clients to the course. One day, he bought me a little indoor putting mat that I would “practice” on every day before preschool.
What is the best piece of advice you have ever gotten that has really stuck with you through your years of playing so far?
One piece of advice that has stuck with me is to “play (golf) happy.” The quote, in its simplicity, is so important to remember when trying to conquer a complex sport like golf. Plus, it worked for Nancy Lopez, so maybe it will work for me.
Congratulations on your recent win at the Diamond Resorts ANNIKA Invitational USA presented by Rolex. What were your thoughts heading into the final round? How did it feel to get your first AJGA win at an Invitational and have Annika there watching you?
Going into the final round, I made sure to remind myself of the incredible opportunity I was presented with. I told myself that no matter what happened the last day, I would learn something. I was devoted to my process, and truly focused on appreciating the moment, good or bad. It was absolutely fantastic to be able to win in that environment, and Annika, who has always been one of my mentors, being there made it even better.
How do you deal with pressure during a round of golf?
When handling pressure during a round of golf, what works for me is reminding myself to have fun. I’ve worked really hard to find the outlook that works while I’m on the course, and I know for a fact (after many rounds of trial and error) that joy and gratitude are essential in my success under pressure.
What other activities do you enjoy doing outside of golf?
Outside of golf, I enjoy seeing my animals, spending time with friends and family, writing, watching The Office, and pretending I am a food critic.
How do you balance being a student while playing golf? What sacrifices, if any, have you had to make?
I attend a small, private school called Spring Creek Academy. It’s flexible so they can accommodate me when I am absent for extended periods, and the shortened schedule allows for more practice time. I have to be diligent about completing work while on the road, but I know I’m fortunate to have the academic situation that I do, while being able to play golf at a high level.
What was your favorite golf tournament you have ever played in so far?
My favorite events that I have played in are the USGA Championships. The level of competition is unmatched, and they are always hosted on first class courses. A close second would be the Diamond Resorts ANNIKA Invitational presented by Rolex.
Can you share one golf tip that has helped you throughout your golf journey so far?
One tip that has helped me is, “Drive for show, putt for dough.” Ball striking is great, but good putting is what wins tournaments.
If there was one piece of advice you could give to aspiring female golfers who are just starting to play the game, what would it be?
If I could give a beginner one piece of advice it would be, to never lose sight of the reason you fell in love with the game. When playing at any level, it is important to remember to return to the simplicity of having fun.
What are your top three goals for this year?
My biggest goal for this year is to continue to become the most consistent and well-rounded player I can be. The best not only play at a high level, but also do it for weeks on end. Goals numbers two and three would be participating in the Junior Ryder Cup and Junior Solheim Cup teams. Securing a spot on these would mean that I have had a great season, and to represent the U.S. playing golf would be a dream.