Launches new tournament for junior golfers
HUNTERSVILLE – At 18 months old, Patrick Cover swung his first golf club. When he was 11, he competed in the Par 3 Shootout Tournament in Pinehurst. Two years later, Patrick won the 2010 National Junior Golf Tour at Myrtle Beach, leading “the college prep series” for his age group.
Now, at 14, he can add one more feat to his ambitious golfing career – a $12,000-plus conquest.
Last month, the Huntersville teen, with the help of fellow junior golfer Thomas Walsh of Willow Creek Golf Course in High Point, organized the first annual Junior Dormie Cup at the Dormie Club in Pinehurst. The Ryder Cup-style charity event, which raised more than $12,000, was founded with one goal: support junior golf programs nationwide and cover tournament fees as well as travel expenses and equipment costs for players in the American Junior Golf Association and Carolinas Golf Association.
The junior golfers raised the money by writing letters to local residents and organizations asking for donations, Patrick’s mom, Patti Cover, said. Allen Tate Company Real Estate and Webb and Allen Orthodontics, both in Huntersville, were among the most generous donors.
In addition, the American Junior Golf and the Carolinas Golf associations worked together to match the money raised.
“This money allows talented kids to participate in more golf programs across the country,” Patti Cover said.
During the two-day Junior Dormie Cup, 12 junior golfers competed in individual and team play as well as a parent round. While a majority of the junior golfers who participated are associated with Huntersville’s NorthStone Country Club, players represented a number of clubs throughout the Carolinas, including River Run in Davidson and The Point at Lake Norman and courses in Pinehurst, High Point, Winston-Salem and Leesville.
On the first day of the tournament, players competed in alternate shot matches followed by a six-player, two-team match-up on Sunday.
Individual trophies went to NorthStone’s Seth Gandy for putting, to Andrew Kennedy of Winston-Salem for the 140-yard/closest to pin contest and to Patrick Cover for chipping.
Kyle Fuller, a junior golfer and freshman starter for the Davidson Day School football team, found something special in the young golfers’ camaraderie.
Thirteen-year-old Blake Fiest, an eighth-grader at Lake Norman Charter School, said the competition to make plays and sink putts made it special for him. He picked up a win during the 18-hole match.
A ninth-grader at Pine Lake Preparatory School in Mooresville, Patrick enjoys lacrosse and soccer, a sport he played at the competitive level before pursuing golf full-time. However, he has a hard time choosing a particular aspect of golf as his favorite.
He hopes to become a professional golfer someday, but his more immediate goal is expanding the Junior Dormie Cup next year. He and his mom want to draw more players and raise more money. Don’t bet against Patrick. He has a history of winning.