Bounds boys have good year on summer youth golf tours
She has to be a great mom to be willing to carry her sons around to venues as far flung as Shreveport, La., where Clay won a Gulf States tournament, to Sea Island, Ga., where he competes in December.
The trip to Georgia came about when Clay signed up for the Southeast Junior Golf Tour, pretty much on a lark. This tour features top young amateurs from Mississippi, Alabama, Louisiana, Tennessee, Florida and Georgia.
In his first event on the tour, the Craft Farms Classic in Gulf Shores, Ala., Clay shot a 72-74 146 to win the tournament and qualify for the Tour's Tournament of Champions at Sea Island, for the 14-15 year-old bracket. He also won a rain-shortened Tour event in Madison earlier this month with a 76.
In addition to the Southeast Junior Tour, Clay will play for the North squad in the Mississippi Junior Cup tournament Dec. 6-8 at Shell Landing Golf Club in Gautier.
On the Gulf States Junior Tour, Clay won the event at Olde Oaks Golf Club in Shreveport and was second in the Tournament of Champions at Brookhaven. His overall play on that tour earned him Player of the Year honors for the 12-13 year-old age group, based on being the accumulated points leader for the tour.
Still, that didn't keep Clay from blowing off a weekend of tournament action to travel with a friend to the beach in Gulf Shores, with his mom's blessing.
Chad's list of winnings in the more scaled-down MJGA 9-11 age group is also pretty impressive. He was first in nine-hole events at Sunkist Country Club in Gulfport and at Canton Country Club.
Playing in the 11-12 year-old age group on the Gulf States Tour, Chad was first at Greenwood and the Pros of Tomorrow Tournament at Tupelo, and he was second at Olde Oaks.
And that leads into one reason Dale finally gave her sons the go-ahead to pursue their golf dreams.
While Chad runs for the cross-country team at Lamar School, where he's a sixth grader, Clay, an eighth-grader at Lamar, will be competing in golf for the Raiders next spring, which makes Lamar golf coach Doyle Bryan very happy.
Bryan, one of the area's top amateurs, thinks Clay Bounds has a chance to be real good if he continues to have success like he has enjoyed this year.
And how good is real good?