PREP SPORTS: ‘Cold Springs will forever and always hold a special place in my heart’: Emma Gellness recaps Eagle years

Cold Springs’ Emma Gellness. (Courtesy of Emma Gellness)

BREMEN, Ala. — Cold Springs senior Emma Gellness was part of the Eagles’ fishing and golf teams during her high school years and in this interview, she shared some of her favorite memories competing alongside her teammates and friends.

“Some of my top moments from fishing was when me and my fishing partner, Cloe Waters, would weigh in our fish that we caught that day. We always had tons of fun fishing all day long at every single tournament. We never caught the biggest bags of fish, but we always made the best of our time. Our amazing boat captain, Todd Waters, coaches us throughout the day, and he always made sure that we had fun. I only played golf for two years, but I also made tons of memories playing it. Me and Evan Freeman were the only girls on our team, but we always made the most of our time. I will always remember our very first golf practice in 10th grade. Neither one of us knew anything about golfing. We were so nervous, but eventually, we figured it out.”

Gellness added,

“At fishing tournaments, there were many amazing fishermen there that we competed against. There were also many amazing golfers at matches and golf tournaments. I made a good friend at one of my first golf matches, Abby Lee from Vinemont High School. She is an extremely talented golfer. Abby gave Evan and I some tips and tricks and was very patient with us, since we had just learned how to play when we met her. What I learned during this experience is that you’re not always going to be the best or most successful in everything you do, but you should never give up.”

Emma was around so many great coaches during her prep career and will deeply miss playing at Cold Springs.

“Our fishing coach and boat captain, Todd Waters, is an amazing guy. He is my fishing partner Cloe’s dad. He treats me like a daughter and always makes sure we have everything that we could possibly need for tournaments. I have so many good things to say about Todd. He puts up with us for over eight hours on the water all day. I had two different golf coaches. My 10th grade year, I had coach Justin Wiley, and my 11th grade year, I had coach Wesley McSwain. They were both amazing coaches and taught us the best way to play. Coach Wiley really got Evan and I started in golf. He taught us almost everything about the game. Coach McSwain was also my Agriscience teacher at school, and he always made sure we had everything that we needed. Both coaches spent hours outside at the golf course with us after school. All of my high school coaches are very special to me.”

She added,

“They all taught me how to play the sport in general. I think Todd taught me how to be a better fisherman. Both of my golf coaches taught me everything that I know about golf. I will miss all of the people I got to compete with and the coaches the most. I will remember all of the lessons that I learned while both fishing and golfing.”

Emma talked about her favorite fishing and golf tournaments she participated in and her favorite high school memory.

“My favorite fishing tournament was this past season at Lake Martin. We caught quite a few fish that day and had tons of fun doing it. My favorite golf tournament was the Cullman County golf tournament my 11th grade year. It was a two-day tournament. We played 18 holes each day, one day at Cross Creek Golf Course and one day at Cheslee Oaks Golf Course. I made friends with some other girls that golfed those two days, and we all enjoyed our time together,” she said. “One of my favorite memories from my senior year was our senior prank. Everyone in our class getting together and having fun together was a great time. We have a small class of about 55 people, so we are all pretty close with each other, and mostly, everyone is friends with each other. I think my graduating class is full of amazing people who are all going to do amazing things.”

Cold Springs will hold a very special place in Emma’s heart and she will deeply miss being an Eagle next year.

“Ever since I moved to Cold Springs in the second grade, I have always felt loved by those around me. When I was the ‘new kid’ in the second grade, I felt very welcomed there. Everyone at Cold Springs is very friendly, considerate, loving, and welcoming. The teachers and staff have all watched me grow up, and me and my classmates have watched each other grow up. My English teacher, Mrs. Voce, is one of the most loving people you will ever meet, and the same goes for our secretary, Mrs. Tammy Gay. Cold Springs will forever and always hold a special place in my heart,” she said. “I will definitely miss my classmates and teachers the most. It is a weird transition going from seeing people at Cold Springs every day to possibly never seeing some of them ever again. I will always remember the caring and loving teachers and staff from Cold Springs High and elementary.”

She gave some advice to those students that will be starting high school in August and was a great role model to so many young people at Cold Springs.

“My advice to them is to always make the best of everything, because high school really does fly by fast. It may seem like it’s going by slowly now, but before you know it, you will be walking across the stage at graduation. Go out of your comfort zone a little bit and try new things. You never know what you might end up loving. I was that way with golf. I adventured out and tried a new thing and ended up playing for two years. Lastly, it doesn’t matter what people think of you. Do what you love.”

Emma added,

“Knowing that younger kids, such as my little sister, look up to me makes me want to strive to become a better person. I was once a little kid in elementary school who looked up to the seniors and other high school kids and wanted to be like them. Who knew that one day, I would become the type of person that I once used to look up to. Knowing that I may be some children’s role model makes my heart happy. That is very important to me.”

Gellness participated in several clubs at Cold Springs, and she had a blast in those as well. She earned a scholarship to Wallace State and talked about her plans for her education going forward.

“I was in the National Honor Society, the 1936 Club, Student Council, the Diamond Dolls, Trio, and the clean campus committee. From participating in those clubs, I learned that it feels really nice to give back to the community or to those in need. Helping those in need makes me feel super happy,” she said. “I received a Future Foundation Scholarship to Wallace State from the Cullman Savings Bank. I am extremely grateful for the opportunity that they have given me. When I received the scholarship, I felt very proud that I was considered a candidate and very grateful. I am going into Diagnostic Imaging at Wallace State, and I plan to become an X-Ray Technician one day.”

She gave advice to those that want to be where she is now, and shared how she wants to be remembered.

“To them, I would say to keep pushing yourself to be the best version of yourself that you can be. Work hard and don’t give up when you fail. Keep trying your best,” she said. “I hope that people remember me as a good person and as a good friend.”

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