Jaxson Mayo swings towards success at Redwood High

Redwood’s Jaxson Mayo takes a swing at a golf tournament at Valley Oaks Golf Course in early April. (Kason Clark)

Senior Jaxson Mayo hopes to drive young Redwood golfers to East Yosemite League this spring as the No. 1 golfer in Rangers’ lineup

VISALIA – With so many strong golfers on the Redwood Rangers this spring, it’s hard to stand out amongst the lineup, but even still, senior golfer Jaxson Mayo has been able to stand tall for his final season.

In his last year in the program, Mayo has led the Rangers as the No. 1 golfer in their lineup. While he excelled on the course, Mayo credits his teammates for driving him to be a better golfer and for making the Rangers a formidable team in the East Yosemite League.

“It’s just determination. Seeing my teammates propel themselves so well and just strive to be the number one team out here,” Mayo said. “I don’t have to work as hard but I still get to put as much dedication in as I can. Just seeing my teammates perform is really what helps me keep going for them.”

Mayo provides the veteran presence on a young Redwood High School team. He is one of only two seniors in the Rangers’ lineup with the other four golfers being a sophomore and three freshmen. After looking up to others through his whole career, Mayo has now found himself as one of the primary leaders for the Rangers.

“It was a struggle at first after so many years of just being an underclassmen and then a junior. You didn’t have to do much and you didn’t really have to step up,” Mayo said. “It’s a change. You really have to show them what it takes to be an upperclassmen, what it takes to be a team captain and what it takes to be a golfer at the end of the day.”

Along with his veteran leadership, Mayo sets an example with his performance on the golf course. This spring, he has been averaging 80 and has a best of 78. So whenever he steps on the course, head coach Brad Pendergast knows that Mayo will provide steady play for the Rangers.

“He’s not super flashy and he doesn’t hit the ball far but he’s steady,” Pendergast said. “He’s a good putter, he’s a good chipper that gets out of trouble when he gets into trouble.”

Mayo’s steadiness and leadership have helped the Rangers start undefeated in East Yosemite League competition. Throughout the season, Mayo and the Rangers have improved their scores each tournament. With the postseason coming up, Pendergast believes this trend bodes well for the Rangers.

“Our ultimate goal is to win league and then the next goal is trying to qualify the whole team for Central Valley,” Pendergast said. “With us being Division I, that’s a tough task to do because you only get one chance to do it, but I think our kids are up to it because we’re playing steady.”

Mayo’s rise to the top of Redwood’s lineup began at a young age. After his family first got him into golf, he really got into the sport once he reached high school. With Mayo’s older brother, J.D. Brewer, being the former head pro at the Kings Country Club in Hanford, Mayo quickly got into the swing of things on the course.

“He taught me just a lot of the fundamentals,” Mayo said about his older brother. “He saw that I was a fast learner so he knew that if he just told me what I was doing wrong, I would be able to know how to fix it on my own time.”

Par for the course for him, Mayo excels in other areas of his life. At school, he has been heavily involved with drama since eighth grade, saying it gives him more variety in his life. As he now heads into his final year in drama, Mayo will participate in the Redwood One Acts, where the students will write the productions themselves.

For his production, Mayo wrote the play “Ken Support Group,” where several Kens from Barbie hold a support group. The play will also involve Redwood teacher Kenneth O’Leary as he plays himself accidentally walking into the group of Kens.

Along with writing the play, Mayo will direct and stage manage it as well. Mayo will also play small parts in other productions in the Redwood One Acts. Throughout high school, his involvement in sports has handicapped his ability to sink his teeth into drama. So with it being his senior year, Mayo has been excited to show what he has on stage.

“With sports, I was always tied up,” Mayo said. “As a senior, I can now just bring that veteran kind of life into it. It was really fun to just work with all of my classmates.”

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Redwood’s Jaxson Mayo putts in a tournament at Valley Oaks Golf Course in early April. (Kason Clark)

Once he wraps up high school, Mayo plans on attending nursing school. Most of his family works in medicine, so Mayo wants to continue the family tradition while also finding a profession where he can help people.

“I’m really big on engaging with people, making friends and making sure everyone’s okay,” Mayo said. “So being a nurse is something where you can work with people constantly all day long and I think that’s something I’ve really wanted for a while and I think that’ll be perfect for me.”

Mayo has already been accepted by California State University Channel Islands where he plans to do his prerequisites. He will be busy with his academics, so competitive golf will not be an option. But when he does have the time, he’ll still be able to itch that golf scratch with all the courses in the area. 

“Channel Islands is right in between Ventura and Malibu, so they have all those pretty golf courses to play,” Mayo said. “Anytime my dad and others visit, I know they’re going to just want to play golf with me.”

Before he heads off to college, Mayo hopes to take one final victory lap with the Rangers this spring. As he heads into the final few weeks of his high school career, Mayo aims to go lower than a score of 78 and hopefully get as low as 75.

Mayo will also look to go far in the postseason. While there will be plenty of tough competition ahead of Mayo, Pendergast believes the senior can make a run.

“I think he can definitely qualify for Central Valley,” Pendergast said. “I’m pretty sure he’s going to qualify because he has to shoot pretty much in the 70s too and he’s been doing that pretty consistently this year. So he’s got a great chance.”

While Mayo wants to achieve individual success in the final weeks of his career, he looks forward to making new memories with his teammates and seeing them succeed this spring. 

“I hope we have a great team overall. If we can go undefeated (in league), that would be really nice,” Mayo said.

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