(CNN) – In September 2017, María Torres was huddled in a room in her grandmother’s home with ten different members of her household.
Hurricane Maria struck his native Puerto Rico. The strongest storm to hit the island in 85 years left dying and destruction.
“It was actually horrible,” explains María Torres to CNN. “We had no energy, every thing was off,” he says.
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12 months have handed and his actuality is greater than completely different.
She grew to become the first Puerto Rican golfer to earn full-time standing on the LPGA Tour, and this Friday, she fired a 69-shot spherical to share the lead halfway by way of the Evian Championship, the remaining of the golf season.
With Puerto Rico devastated, María Torres sought to enter the LPGA Tour qualifying collection, generally known as Q-College.
Fortuitously, Torres was ready to journey to the United States for the second stage of the course of and achieved the objective.
Again residence, Puerto Rico endured months of energy outages due to electrical system injury.
“We had been ten folks and all of us stayed in a single room as a result of we had a generator,” Torres remembers. “It was a sort of expertise to wash garments with my fingers, I’ve to thank my aunts, they actually helped me lots,” he provides.
Not every thing was straightforward after becoming a member of the LPGA Tour. Prior to the Evian Match, Torres had missed the minimize in 9 of the earlier 12 tournaments, and has recorded solely two top-10 finishes throughout his debut yr.
However, on the shores of Lake Geneva, every thing went because it ought to. An eagle was the spotlight of a profitable first day, whereas 4 birdies took her to the high of the rankings on Friday.
For a second, Torres permits himself to take into consideration the test for $ 577,500 for the winner.
“I don’t need to get forward of myself, I simply need to hold taking part in,” he says, though he smiles massively earlier than admitting that “it could be superb.”
“I’m simply in search of alternatives and taking part in golf, that’s the solely factor I can management,” he says.
A victory for Torres might additionally increase morale in a rustic that continues to rebuild.
And he or she participates in initiatives to contribute to Puerto Rico, organizing a program along with her skilled associate Rafael Campos, which raised $ 600,000 for charities on the island.
“It was superb, simply to see a pair of golfers come collectively to assist us rebuild our nation,” he added. “It’s superb, we’re fortunate to have associates who need to assist us,” he mentioned.