To borrow a song title from The Beatles, it’s been “a long and winding road’ for Carlos Gomez to find his way to Tahlequah and a spot on the Northeastern State golf team. Carlos was born in Tulsa while his dad was a student at Tulsa University. When he finished at TU the family returned to their native Columbia and like most kids his age, Carlos grew up playing soccer but, by accident, that soon changed.
“When I was eight or nine, I broke my collar bone playing soccer and my mom didn’t want me playing it anymore. One of my cousins was starting to play golf and so I started playing too and have been ever since. I was sad at first because soccer is such a big sport in South America and I still like to play even now when I can but once I started golf, I just fell in love with it,” said Gomez.
Wanting to play golf in college, Carlos moved back to Tulsa when he was a junior and played for Union High School his senior year.
“One of my coaches at Union was Jordan Perceful who played at NSU, and he dropped my name to coach Varner, and they offered me a scholarship. But there were all kinds of problems and red tape in getting my grades and paperwork from Columbia and it looked like NSU wasn’t going to be able to hold my scholarship and though it took a good part of that first year, it all finally worked out.”
Carlos is a Covid junior though a senior academically and says he has really enjoyed his time as a RiverHawk.
“There’s really a good environment here since the school is not as big as an OU or OSU and it’s easier to get closer with people and be involved in campus activities.”
Carlos, who follows Dustin Johnson and Jon Rahm on the PGA Tour, has made a couple of memories of his own in his time at NSU.
“The first tournament I played in was at Muskogee. I shot a nine under for 36 holes and was leading and that was cool. The next year I went to a tournament in St. Louis and finished seventh and then I won my first tournament last year at Central Missouri.”
This year Carlos led the RiverHawks with a 73.56 scoring average and garnered his third All-MIAA selection while completing a degree in Financial Planning.
“I would tell any high school golfer to give a good look at NSU for college. It’s a solid D-II program that’s usually always ranked in the top 30 or 40 in the country. As an international student coming here, I was amazed of how accepting everyone was. Coming to NSU has been a really great journey for me.”
As long and winding as it was.