McALESTER — Coming from Frink-Chambers Elementary School, McAlester senior Madison Young said she didn’t know many people when she transferred to McAlester High School before her freshman year.
But Young had grown up golfing with her grandfather Sid at the McAlester Country Club, and playing golf for the Lady Buffaloes quickly provided her with a new community.
“The first time I ever really played golf, I remember my grandpa ... he gave me one club, and I just played the whole course with that,” Young said Friday. “It took me forever, but I did it.
“I’d kinda told myself, ‘I want to play golf.’ And when I set my mind to something, there’s no changing it.”
Young’s been a four-year varsity golfer for the Lady Buffs. She said tournaments during her freshman season could be scary, but she eventually got over the nervousness, learning a life lesson in the process.
“Going to tournaments and having to play with girls you’ve never met before, you learn to just kinda not be shy,” Young said.
“It kinda helps you out with dealing with doing stuff in front of large crowds. It’s more of an individual sport. You can go play a basketball game, but it’s your whole team. In golf, it’s you. Nobody else on your team is helping you. Like now, I can go to a tournament, and everybody at that tournament could watch me and it wouldn’t affect me.”
McAlester girls’ golf coach Aron Holt couldn’t join his team until the season had already started. An assistant girls’ basketball coach, Holt had to stay with that team, which reached the second week of the postseason.
As the most experienced golfer on the team, Young said she had to step up in Holt’s absence.