After a little over a month here with the GSGA, I’ve helped conduct a total of five junior competitions. These competitions have included the Georgia Junior Championship, a U.S. Junior Amateur Qualifier, and a few Junior Sectional events in the Northeast and East regions of the state.
As a player, I never realized how much work goes into each and every one of these tournaments on a weekly basis. Now being on the administrative side, I have a greater respect for each of the sectional chairmen, the golf course staff, and each person before me who has worked hard to make sure these events go as smoothly as possible. The employees of The Creek at Hard Labor, Monroe Golf & Country Club, Forest Hills Golf Club, Brunswick Country Club, and UGA Golf Course deserve recognition in making my job easier while I was on site for the various junior events held at these locations.
Conducting Junior Sectional events in the Northeast region certainly brings back some good memories from my time as a junior golfer. I grew up playing in the Northeast region throughout middle school and high school, so it’s great to see these events still being played at some of the same courses and all of the players of various age groups out enjoying the game.
There are certain lessons we all can learn from the game of golf. I certainly learned my fair share from being exposed to and playing the game at a young age. Some of these lessons stuck with me and have translated well for me throughout various situations in my life.
Golf taught me to respect my fellow competitors, which in turn led me to become more respectful of those all around me on a daily basis. Golf taught me to be punctual; five minutes early is on-time. Golf taught me to concentrate; each shot in golf is as important to your round as the next and each shot demands your full attention. Golf taught me to do my work early; studying the course layout and noticing all problems you could face during play help you succeed during tournament time. Golf taught me to adapt; hundreds of times things have happened to me on a golf course that were beyond my control. Golf taught me to never stop learning; you can always become a better golfer if you’re open to learning from those who are more experienced. Finally, and most importantly, golf taught me to always have fun; regardless of how poor your round is going, you can count it as a stepping stone towards your ultimate goal.
Traveling to these junior events across the state has been both a learning experience and a lot of fun. It’s very exciting to see the talent level that we have here in the state of Georgia, but I also hope that these players are learning important lessons from the game. I still put the lessons I learned to use every day.
P.J. Boatwright Intern