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Newton: Hometown hero

October 25, 2012

Freshman Brandon Newton tees off in golf practice at Squire Creek Country Club. - Photo by Kyle Kight

 

ALWAYNE GREEN
Sports Reporter

 

At the tender age of around five or six, freshman golfer Brandon Newton followed his dad on the green to play golf. However, Newton’s baptism in golf came when he started playing at 12 years old at Squire Creek Country Club.

 

Following in the footsteps of his father, Newton said he was engaged by the fun and challenge of playing golf once he started. Like many other children who grew up in Ruston, Newton said he would attend football games at Tech, but he said he was a baseball player before he became a golfer.

 

“I used to play baseball a little bit, but I gave that up for golf because golf was a lot more fun,” he said. “It’s more challenging and there are more things to accomplish.”

 

While attending Cedar Creek High School, Newton matured as a player and reeled in several accomplishments both in the classroom as well as on the golf course.

 

Newton was a four-time all-state and all-regional golfer. In 2009 and 2010, he was a first-place finisher at regionals. He also received the Jason Moss award as a junior and he was named academic all-state Class A in his senior year.

 

The former high school standout golfer said he loved all the championships he won in high school, but his senior year was special because it is when he played his best golf.

 

Not many people get to live their dreams, and Newton said he is fortunate to get that chance.

 

“I’ve always wanted to go to Tech since I was little,” he said. “My dad went here and I like the coaches.”

 

The freshman’s records of success in high school is no secret to the community of Ruston, therefore, Newton said it motivates him to give his best efforts in practice and tournaments.

 

“Being from Ruston, I have high expectations for myself,” he said. “I try to practice hard and try to get better every day in trying to achieve my goals.”

 

The optimistic Newton said he feels at home playing golf around familiar faces at Squire Creek.

 

“I love playing golf for Tech and I’m looking forward to the years to come,” Newton said.

 

Tech golf head coach, Jeff Parks, appears to be a father figure to Newton as Parks said their relationship expands way before Newton was a teenager.

 

“Our relationship is probably better than anybody else on the team because I know him better than anyone else on the team,” Parks said.

 

Parks summarized Newton’s progress and transition from high school golf, where he was dominant, to college golf as a normal process.

 

“He was a big fish in a small pond and now he is a small fish in a big pond,” Parks said. “It takes a lot of adjustment time, it’s not something that is foreign and it happens to pretty much everybody in the college ranks.”

 

Parks spoke admirably of Newton’s approach to golf and his work ethic.

 

“He’ll outwork everybody and he is not going to quit at anything he ever does,” Parks said.

 

Parks said though Newton may not be satisfied with his progress so far, he has the heart of a champion.

 

“Champions are champions,” Parks said. “He has won on stages that other people haven’t, and he has had the pressures of defending a title which is enormous.”

 

Email comments to ahg007@latech.edu.

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