Stephen Geri | Hobbies | San Antonio, Texas

Golf, Tennis, Fishing and other things Stephen Geri loves to do when he's not at the office.

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Stephen Geri blog header for mistakes new golfers make

3 Common Mistakes New Golfers Make

Golf is one of the most difficult sports to master. Many people have played golf for their entire lives, and every one of them is still working to improve their swings and bring their scores down. If you start golfing with bad habits, they become extremely difficult to break once you start playing more and recognize the flaws you’ve developed. The following mistakes are made by most golf beginners and typically slow their progress until the mistakes are corrected. You will be ahead of the game if you can avoid making these 3 mistakes when you hit the links for the first time.

Trying to Kill the Ball

If I could pass one piece of knowledge over anything else to new golfers it would be this: Hitting the ball 100 yards on a straight line is more beneficial than hitting it 300 yards into the woods. So many new golfers walk onto their first tee box with the mentality of hitting the ball as far as they can. You need to focus on striking the ball well and hitting it straight when you are first starting out. The distance will come in time as you refine your swing and make improvements. Focus on good fundamentals at first to set yourself up for success.

Using the Wrong Clubs

The size of your clubs is one of the most important parts of hitting consistent golf shots. If your clubs are too long, too short, too stiff, or not stiff enough, you will most likely be playing from the rough or the woods for the majority of the day. Do yourself a favor and visit a local pro shop to get fitted for clubs. It will make your life much easier in the long run when you know how long your clubs should be. Depending on the pro shop, they may also have you swing a few different clubs to analyze what stiffness you’ll need.

Going for the Green from Everywhere

If you are behind a tree, in the rough behind a dogleg, or don’t have a clean shot at the green, do not try to go for it. Beginning golfers often tend to try to go for the green as much as possible, and it usually turns into a few extra strokes on their scorecard at the end of the day. It also doesn’t teach you to hit the ball from a good lie. If you can’t hit the ball straight from the fairway, there’s a good chance you’re not going to hit the ball straight out of the woods. Lay up and get the ball to the fairway so you can have a solid lie and give yourself the best chance to get to the fairway.


When it comes down to it, you are not going to be good at golf for a while. You might as well give yourself the best chance of improving by avoiding the mistakes mentioned above and focusing on getting a little better every time you’re out.

Benefit Tuesdays | May 23, 2017

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3 Items to Take on Every Fishing Trip

Fishing is simple, right? To the outsider who doesn’t do much fishing, you just show up with a pole and some worms. In reality, fishing is much more complex than that. Seasoned veteran fisherman study a number of things that influence how the fish react and what lures they’re going to be most attracted to. While it’s a good idea to “pack the worms” and make sure you have the lures you’re going to be using for the day, there are also a few items you should be taking with you every time you go fishing. The following three things may not seems like they’re important to a fisherman until you fish with them once. You’ll be wondering how you ever fished without them.

Fingernail Clippers

This may be the most used tool in my tackle box. Think of how many times you change lures when you’re out on a day trip. If you do what most anglers do and bite the line off with your teeth, there’s a good chance you are leaving the knot on all of your lures. This becomes problematic the next time you need to use that same lure. Instead of biting the line, clip the knot with a fingernail clipper so you don’t have to worry about taking the knot off later. It will also help preserve your teeth, and you won’t have to the taste of lake water in your mouth after you change your lures.

A Disposable Poncho

Fishing in the rain is a lot of fun if you’re not getting soaked. A disposable poncho can be rolled up and kept in your tackle box or fishing vest. Many times, when it starts to rain is when the fish become really active. You don’t want to have to pack it in and head home just because you are getting wet. Throw a poncho over your head and keep fishing in pursuit of the biggest fish of the day.

A Multi-Tool

A multi-tool with a knife, file, corkscrew, miniature saw, bottle opener, and can opener will take care of almost any task you can think of. Whether you need to open a can of corn or cut down some branches that are in between you and the honey hole, the multi-tool will take care of it. You can purchase one at any outdoor store, and they’re small enough to carry in your pocket wherever you go.

Fishing without the proper tools can ruin your day. If you remember to pack the previously mentioned items, you’ll have a great day on the lake regardless of how many fish you catch.

Benefit Tuesdays | May 16, 2017

Stephen Geri golf bag blog header

4 Items Beginners Should Carry in their Golf Bag

Golf is a sport that may seem simple to the outsider. Get a bag full of clubs, balls, and tees and head out to the course for a few hours of fun. In reality, there is much more to pay attention to when you are on the links, and most golfers’ bags are full of items to help make some tasks easier. If you are not sure of what you should be carrying, the following list will help you decide. Make sure you carry these five items to your favorite course the next time you head out.

Ball Marker

There are many companies that sell all kinds of ball markers, but in reality, you can mark your ball with anything. The reason you’ll need a ball marker is in case your ball could interfere with someone else’s putt. You’ll generally want something flat and thin to mark your ball so it does not cause too much of a disturbance on the green. If you do not want to buy a ball marker, you can use a lucky coin, a guitar pick, a button, or something similar in size and weight.

Divot Repair Tool

Once you start getting your approach shots dialed in, you’ll notice your ball will make divots in the green. It’s poor etiquette to leave these divots in the green as they could interfere with someone else’s shot later in the day. Divot tools are inexpensive and can be found in virtually any pro shop in the world. To use the tool, poke holes in a circle around the divot and lift it out above the green. You can then use your putter to smooth it and get it back in line with the green. It doesn’t take long to fix your divots and it will help keep everyone who plays the hole after you happy.

A Wire Brush

Once you have a wire brush in your bag, you’ll wonder why you never carried one in the past. Whenever you have to use an iron and get some mud or dirt on it, it’s a good idea to remove as much of that debris with a wire brush to keep your clubs in good working order. Most sporting good stores will have wire brushes specifically for golf that can be attached to the outside of your bag for easy access.

Two Towels

You’ll notice most golfers have a towel attached to the outside of their bag, and you may be thinking that is used to wipe them off. In reality, that towel attached to their bag is used to clean their clubs. You should always carry a towel for your clubs, you you’ll also want a towel for yourself. It can get brutally hot on the golf course, and you’ll be thanking yourself when you can wipe the sweat out of your eyes with a towel before you tee off.

Golf is a game that is never the same no matter how many times you play the same course. By carrying these items, you’ll at least be able to keep your clubs and the course looking great while you are making improvements to your game.

Benefit Tuesdays | May 9, 2017

May 9 Benefit Stephen Geri

Stephen Geri header for spinning reels blog

The 5 Best Spinning Reels on the Market

If you’ve been fishing as long as I have, you know there is a distinct difference between a good reel and a great reel. The amount of feel and action you get from a great reel will leave you wondering why you weren’t fishing with one since you started. There are a number of great reels on the market right now, but the following seven are a cut above the rest.

The Okuma Avenger

The okuma Avenger is the lightest reel on the list. It’s graphite construction is designed to provide a solid reel without any extra weight. The drag system is ultra-responsive by incorporating the Japanese oiled felt drag washers. Six ball bearings in the spinning mechanism of the reel and one quick-set ball bearing in the crank provides some of the smoothest hooksets you will experience.

Penn Battle II

If you’ve ever purchased a Penn reel, you know what you are getting into. The Battle II is the latest installment in a history of tried and true reels from Penn. Carbon fiber drag washers along with various carbon fiber components create a light yet sturdy reel that can brave any element. Five stainless steel ball bearings and an anti-reverse ball bearing provide a great experience from the cast to the catch.

The Pflueger President

Pflueger really outdid itself with the construction of the president, and it is aptly named considering it is my favorite reel on this list. Another graphite construction that comes in just an ounce heavier than the lightest reel on our list, but when you put it on your hand you can’t notice at all. The drag provides consistent pressure, and every component was constructed to withstand the elements to avoid corrosion.

Lew’s Speed

There’s no better way to describe this reel than by using it’s name. If you like to fish fast, then this is the reel for you. The faster you reel, the better it responds. The aluminum design with carbon inserts allows you to save weight when you need to while still feeling like you’re holding a sturdy reel in your hand. This may be the only reel that makes it seem like you can outreel the fish before they get to your lure.

The Sougayilang Metal Spool

This flashy reel is CNC machined to perfection. If you’re not catching fish, you’re at least going to stand out in the crowd with this anodized gold gem. The s-curve oscillation system allows for flawless line widening and constant tension without activating the drag unless you absolutely need it. 13 total ball bearings, a one-way clutch, and an anti-reverse bearing in the handle makes it hard for you to blame a missed fish on this reel.

Benefit Tuesday|May 2, 2017

Stephen Geri Bedded Bass

The 3 Best Bedded Bass Baits

There are few things more exciting than spring bass fishing in Texas. While it can be challenging to target bass while they’re bedded down, there’s nothing like hooking into a lunker in the crisp spring air. Over the years I have experimented with dozens of tactics and baits for springtime bedded bass. I have had the most success with the following baits in the spring when I’m targeting those big bedded bass.


Plastic tubes have been my go-to bait for years, and they’re especially effective during the spring when the bass aren’t as mobile and are in defense mode as opposed to predator mode. Make sure you use a hook that is close to the same length as the tube. The reason you should do this is because the bass will often not be as interested in eating your tube as they will be in moving it off of their bed. When they grab the tube by the tail, like they do with anything else on their bed, they will still be grabbing your hook.

Plastic Lizards

Lizards and bass don’t typically get along, but in the spring there is no love lost between the two animals. The lizards want the bass eggs, and the bass will do everything they can to keep the lizards at bay. Plastic lizards are the perfect bait to take advantage of this feud and allow nature to have a say how your day on the lake will go. Drag the Texas or Carolina rigged lizard across the bass beds and you’ll garner plenty of attention.


Rat-L-Traps are my favorite brand of lipless crankbait, but in reality you do not really need to use that brand. I just found that the added rattle from the beads inside the bait tend to draw more strikes than a traditional lipless crankbait. A simple cast and retrieve that just grazes the tops of the weeds above the beds is usually enough to trigger plenty of strikes throughout the day. If you want to mix it up, you can let the bait drop into the weeds and bring it back to the surface, which I have to work well in colder waters when the bass aren’t moving to the top of the bed.

Spring is probably my favorite time for bass fishing. The weather is beautiful, and not too hot, and it takes a certain set of skills to be able to locate and entice bedded bass to strike. It’s not something that happens overnight, but with enough practice you’ll be pulling plenty of bass from your local lake this spring.

Stephen Geri Masters

2017 Masters Preview: Final Two Group Predictions

Of the four major golf tournaments, the Masters is by far the most exciting for golf fans and players alike. After a long winter layoff, golf gets back to full swing every April in Augusta, Georgia, and it couldn’t. The perfectly manicured course is one of the most challenging in golf, and the Green Jacket waiting for someone at the end of the 18th hole on Sunday is one of the most coveted trophies in sports. This year’s Masters is shaping up to be an instant classic with a star-studded field of competitors. The following eight golfers are my picks for the final two groups to tee off on Sunday, in no particular order.

Henrik Stenson

Coming in at number five in the world, Stenson has a legitimate shot at being a frontrunner on Sunday in Augusta. He was the embodiment of consistency at the end of 2016, and he picked up right where he left off this year. If he can drive the ball well like he has in past Masters tournaments and putt consistently he will be in good shape.

Dustin Johnson

DJ is a fan favorite, and plenty of experts are picking him to win the whole thing. He finished tied for fourth in last year’s Masters, and he has been showing improvements in his game each tournament since. He took over the world number one spot and played well down the stretch in 2016. Solid iron play will be the key to his success.

Rickie Fowler

It seems like Fowler has been on the fringe of excellence for the past few years, and he is poised to break out in 2017. His putting has always carried him at Augusta, but he needs to be able to drive the ball consistently and hit more greens in regulation to have a legitimate shot on Sunday.

Rory McIlroy

Rory has been nursing an injury that kept him sidelined for the majority of 2017 thus far. Augusta would be the perfect course for a return to top-tier competition as he strives to complete the career Grand Slam. He’s finished in the top 10 in each of the last three Masters, and if he can avoid any awful rounds like in 2014 and 2016 we could see him walk away with the Green Jacket.

Jordan Spieth

Spieth knows what it is like to win at Augusta(2015), and he also knows what it feels like to fall apart (12th hole in 2015) on Sunday. Nobody has played as well as Spieth over the last three months, and he is carrying that momentum from the West Coast to the Masters. Barring a meltdown or any bad luck, Spieth will be in the hunt on Sunday.

Phil Mickelson

Masters experience. Lefty has more of it than the majority of the field combined, and that alone could be enough for him to fly under the radar to Sunday. He hasn’t played well as of late, particularly with his irons. If he can get his midrange game together, Mickelson will be mixing it up at the top of the leaderboard.

Adam Scott

Scott hasn’t finished inside the top 10 at Augusta since winning the Masters in 2013. With the ability to crush the ball, keep it on the fairway, and play with extreme poise all weekend, he has the potential to tee off with the leaders Sunday afternoon. He will need to hit some challenging putts without his long putter to put himself in a position to win.

Sergio Garcia

There is no love lost between Sergio and Augusta, and this may finally be his year to contend for a Masters championship. He has not fared well at Augusta recently with only one top-10 finish in the last 10 years. His play has been streaky as of late, but if he can string together a few good rounds he will be playing as the sun is going down on Sunday.

Regardless of who is in the final two groups on Sunday, we are in for an exciting weekend of golf. Augusta National always has a number of surprises in store, and this year will be no different.

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