All throughout the months of June and July, The Setonian will be talking to senior student-athletes from the softball, baseball, golf and tennis teams who were unable to play out their final season at Seton Hall. We want to commemorate their time as Pirates and shed light on their accomplishments as well as their plans after graduation. In our first feature of the series, Matt Collins talks to Alex Chalk of men’s golf.
Coming to Seton Hall from Scotland, Alex Chalk left his mark on the men’s golf program. He recorded a 75.28 career stroke average and finished 12 rounds under par over the course of his career. Chalk was also named a Big East Academic All-Star in his freshman, sophomore and junior years.
Matt Collins: Are you in Scotland or are you still in the U.S. right now?
Alex Chalk: I’m currently in Connecticut. I moved out of my house in Jersey about five days ago. I was thinking about going back home but I couldn’t really risk not coming back just with everything that’s going on. I talked to my family and just decided it was best because I have this job in Connecticut it was best for me to come up here and just stay here for a two-week quarantine.
MC: What is your quarantine go-to to keep you busy?
AC: I was up in Connecticut during the first part of the quarantine, then I was back down in Jersey to pack up my house. When I was in Jersey, FIFA was the game I went to, just playing my career mode on FIFA 19. Now I’m binging anything and everything on Netflix. I watched Money Heist, I’m on to Lucifer now.
MC: How are you coping with the loss of your senior golf season?
AC: It’s kind of just a bummer for me because honestly my junior year I fell out of love with the game and even just being here (at Seton Hall). I wasn’t enjoying any aspect of it so I really thought about going home and then I had a couple of conversations with a few important people in my life and that got me back to enjoying golf and then from there actually for the first time ever I set goals. Playing well at Big East would’ve been a nice way to cap off my career. Honestly, I don’t think it’ll ever properly hit me; it’s always going to sting a little bit. On the course we played on at Bandon Dunes, there’s a hole where it runs right along the water and I finished on that hole and I looked out and I was like this has been pretty awesome. It sounds a bit cringe, but I was able to reflect and be like this was a cool experience, so I’ll always have that to look back on.
MC: What is your favorite Seton Hall memory?
AC: Sports related, there’s so many. We took a trip to San Francisco and played on all the best golf courses there, winning the Princeton Tournament freshman year and this past spring we went to Bandon Dunes in Oregon, a really nice resort, one of the best in America. It was a really cool experience, and I really enjoyed that. In terms of school related I’d say graduating and actually finishing school.
MC: What are your plans post-graduation and has coronavirus affected them at all?
AC: Luckily enough for me, coronavirus hasn’t affected it. The reason I’m up in Connecticut is because I’m pursuing an assistant professional role at a golf club called Bulls Bridge Golf Club, which is actually on our schedule every year. It’s the second tournament we play, and the head pro there is also an ex-Seton Hall guy and his son (Hunter Ramee) is on the golf team. I met Paul Ramee through playing the tournament. I built a good enough relationship with him where he was willing to take me on as an intern last year, and I must’ve done okay at it because they want me back for this season. The only thing is I had to do the two-week quarantine, so maybe the only effect coronavirus has had on me is that I have to sit and do nothing for two weeks.
MC: What is one lesson you would like to impart on the returning underclassmen on the golf team?
AC: Letting the stress of everything get to you is one of the things you need to manage. Don’t let it get to you too much. I enjoyed this year way more because I was almost stress free. Try to enjoy every moment. There’s going to be days that suck but take it with a pinch of salt.
Matt Collins can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.