Teo Chiesa will soon be playing golf at the collegiate level, as the Turlock High student signed a letter of intent for California State University, Bakersfield and its Division I program.
“It really came down to Bakersfield and Sonoma State, and I went to visit Bakersfield and what kind of caught my eye was that the head coach [Greg Osbourne] was really welcoming and took the entire day off to show me around the campus, which I really appreciate that,” Chiesa said. “I loved it there; I thought it was really nice. I also really like the hot weather; usually it’s when I play my best golf.”
“What’s nice is that I have had Teo for the past four years and have watched him grow over the course of that time. [He's] gone to Masters all four years and is a great kid, from a great family and he will be missed,” Turlock golf head coach Jason Boswell said.
It was a bit of a long shot for Chiesa, however, who began his recruiting process later than most and he saw many schools with full teams at that point, but he didn't lose hope.
“I am just so excited and happy. I had a rough time with recruiting since I started late and so a lot of schools that I emailed said their teams were full and it was discouraging but coach Osbourne was always right there and had a spot on the team for me,” said Chiesa when asked about his decision.
The graduating senior is a three time Central California Conference Most Valuable Player for boys golf and has only seen two league losses over the course of his four-year varsity career.
“I am just so excited and the hard work, which I put a lot of time in, is finally paying off,” Chiesa added. “I just love the game, hitting good shots and making putts, I just love that, it’s my favorite. When I finish playing on a fun course, it’s so exciting I just love it.”
He was part of the Bulldog varsity squad that won the CCC title in all four seasons and is only the second player to move on to a D-I program for Turlock golf graduates.
“He is the second guy, Paul Smith is at USC right now and now it’s Teo. It’s kind of neat, great kid, great family and a great golfer; he is going to be very successful at the next level,” said Boswell.
Chiesa said he is looking forward to improving his game at Bakersfield.
“It all kind of came together and I realized that this is definitely the place, they have great practice facilities and I get to practice at five different country clubs which are less than five to 10 minutes away from the campus and it’s just a perfect set up for me, just perfect,” said Chiesa.
Chiesa hopes to continue to build on his golf career at the next level, but also in the classroom where he will be majoring in Psychology with aspirations of becoming a therapist.
This season, in his final take at the Masters tournament, Chiesa tied for 15th overall with a score of 73, just missing the Nor Cal qualifying mark of 70 by three strokes.
“You kind of get used to having him there since it has been every year of high school for him, and it’s sort of unreal that he won’t be here next year but I am happy for him, his family and the opportunity he will get over the next years at Bakersfield. It is exciting for our program, anytime you have a kid go play at the next level that is just a great thing,” Boswell added.