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Millcreek Journal

Shelley brothers help each other on and off the golf course

Oct 12, 2023 11:03AM ● By Daniel Olsen

Brothers Tyson, Jackson and Austin Shelley. (Photo by Solhee Shelley)

When brothers Tyson, Jackson and Austin Shelley tried various sports as kids, they stumbled by accident into the sport of golf that has become a big part of their lives.

“I was a big basketball and baseball player,” BYU and former Skyline High School golfer Tyson Shelley said. “In the summer we didn’t play as many sports so my mom decided to sign us up for golf camp. We ended up really enjoying it. I fell in love after playing in my first tournament. After I shot 88 and saw progress continue to happen is what helped me stick with it.”

While he has been a great mentor to his brothers, Tyson Shelley has mentors up to the professional level that have helped him with his game.

“Tony Finau has been an awesome mentor to me,” Tyson Shelley said. “We share the same coach. He’s given me good advice. If I ask a question he is always happy to answer it. It’s especially helpful because he’s local and competes with the best players in the world.”

That advice seems to have paid off as Tyson Shelley recently won the 56th Pacific Coast Amateur over the summer. His goal is to advance from the amateur to the pro ranks in the future.

“Tony really hasn’t talked to me much about the pros,” Tyson Shelley said. “There is a slight difference between the college and professional ranks. They make a couple more putts. They drive the ball the exact same. From 80 yards in, the pro game is significantly better. He is an excellent wedge player and putter.”

Tyson Shelley and his brothers have all learned different preparation techniques to help them get to this point.

“When I play with BYU, I will see what the course is going to be like,” Tyson Shelley said. “If it’s a wedging course, I practice hitting wedges. If it’s a driving course then I practice with my drivers. Mental preparedness is also important. I practice positive self-talk. You never want to be negative. All of this helps you to be prepared for the next tournament or round.”

“I also prepare for what I need that day,” Austin Shelley said. “I practice tee shots if it’s a tight course. I always practice putting it inside 10 feet.” 

Younger brothers Jackson and Austin Shelley both play for rival schools. Jackson Shelley is at Skyline and Austin Shelley is at Olympus.

Skyline has always been better than Olympus, both Jackson and Austin Shelley agreed. The brothers haven’t been rivals in golf until the last couple years when Olympus has competed with Skyline. The brothers said their parents “just root for us to do well individually.”

Tyson Shelley is taking a year off from golfing at BYU to focus on other goals he has.

“I’m just trying to take a lot of credits and get good grades,” Tyson Shelley said. “I’m trying to get better and practice every day. I’m trying to be the best player I can be. I play in tournaments on the side, but I am not competing with the team. I will go out of state for some tournaments. I will practice through the winter and spring to get ready for summer events next year.”

While they all are different in age, the three brothers have equal experience since they started playing golf around the same time so they push each other.

“We can still push each other,” Austin Shelley said. “I beat Jackson a couple times. Jackson can hang with Tyson sometimes. I can’t hang with Tyson. We all push each other and play short wedge games since we are all decently similar in the short game area. I drive it 50 yards shorter than my brothers, so it’s harder to compete when we play a full game.”

Jackson Shelley is preparing for the next level as he is in the process of being recruited by several college teams.

“I’m just trying to find the right fit,” Jackson Shelley said. “I will pick whatever feels like the best place to go to. I’m excited to move forward with that.”

Both Jackson and Austin Shelley have big goals for the remainder of this high school season.

“A big goal I have in October is to do well at the state championships,” Jackson Shelley said. “State is the biggest tournament of the year. I want to do well in it. We are trying to go back to back.”

“I am hoping to finish top five individually in the state,” Austin Shelley said. “I want to be all-state. We can beat Skyline because they lost their players. It’s down to us and East.”

The sport of golf has also taught the three brothers about life skills.

“I learned the importance of organizing things,” Tyson Shelley said. “We can’t just do things inconsistently. You have to be organized in everything you do. The biggest lesson I learned is to be organized in practice and disciplined in everything I do.”

When putting it in perspective, Tyson Shelley is grateful for what golf has done for his relationship with his younger brothers.

“We are out there trying to get better and get to the highest level,” Tyson Shelley said. “We like spending time as brothers on the course. We form special bonds that you can’t get often. We are competing as brothers which has formed a great relationship between us.”λ