WHEATON – As a child, Michael Suazo would often use sticks to take swings at little pebbles and rocks.
Seeing this, Suazo’s parents decided to get their son a set of golf clubs.
Now years later, Suazo is an incoming junior at Wheaton North High School and a returning state qualifier for the Falcons’ golf team.
“I picked it up naturally,” said Suazo, who also played baseball and soccer growing up. “I started pretty young, my first tournament was when I was 6 years old.”
This summer has been a whirlwind for Suazo, who has already competed in more than 10 tournaments with two more on the schedule.
“I’ve had a few good tournaments and a few not-so-good tournaments,” he said. “But it has been a pretty solid summer.”
Suazo often practices twice a day when not entered in an event and can usually be found at Klein Creek in Winfield or Cantigny in Wheaton. A main focus has been his work on the green.
“I’m trying to focus a lot on my putting,” Suazo said. “That is probably the most important part of my game. And I’m also working on accuracy. I’m not too worried about how far I hit it, I want to keep it in play. I’m working on my swing to do that.”
Not too far off is the start of the high school campaign, which Suazo is definitely looking forward to.
“Our team will be pretty young but I feel like we can be very good,” he said. “We have a lot of talent.”
He will head into the fall with a lot of confidence after tying for 33rd place at the Class 3A state meet in 2012. Suazo posted a 79 in the opening round before day two was washed out.
“I was kind of upset we couldn’t play the second round,” he said. “But knowing that I qualified last year, it just shows me I can do it. I’m looking forward to hopefully doing it the next two years.”
And no matter how this fall turns out for Suazo, he always has a claim to fame to fall back on. As a 10-year-old, he sunk a pair of hole-in-ones in a couple-week stretch at the Pinehurst Golf Resort in North Carolina. He added another hole-in-one at St. Andrews in West Chicago three years later.
But Suazo is still chasing another member of his family.
“My grandfather has five.”