Two junior golfers from the Lacombe Golf and Country Club have the distinguished honour of being selected to the Alberta Golf Developmental team.
Chase Broderson, 17, and Brady MacKinlay, 16, were both selected to the northern team, which is comprised of 10 other golfers. There are another 10 golfers selected for the southern region.
“It was a good day when I got the invitation,” Broderson said. “The main factor that led to that was a pretty solid performance last year at the Alberta Junior Provincials (last year). That got me a couple Order of Merit points which led to me being invited.”
Broderson was excited to be able to capitalize on the opportunities presented to him through the developmental squad.
“It gets your foot in the door and gets you the help that you need to get to the next level,” he said, adding that golf is a game that continually presents new challenges.
“It is always different; last week the driver was the best and this week it might be the short game that is the best,” he said. “If you ever have a problem, you always have someone to go to to get it fixed.”
Being able to compete with some of the province’s best young golfers also provides avenues of opportunity.
“You want to try and do better then everyone else. With the development team, there are two spots up for grabs in the Alberta Amateur Championship,” he said.
He added, “It is pretty cool, especially having two kids from Lacombe on that team.”
MacKinlay was excited to be selected for his team, especially considering that last year was his first year of competitive golf.
“It was out of the blue because last year was my first good year of golf,” he explained.
“I wasn’t really prepared for it, but when it happened I was pretty excited. It was the first year I was on the MJT Tour (Maple Leaf Junior Golf Tour). Before then I was playing a couple small tournaments here and there but other then that I was a casual golfer. Last year everything kicked into gear and I was playing really good.”
McKinlay was pleased to have CPGA professionals as a resource.
“It gives you a couple exemptions to different tournaments and they give you some guidance to your mental game,” he said. “They will give you some coaching if you need it.
“Partially it is confidence knowing that you are there because you are good enough. They are PGA professionals and know what they are doing. Pretty much anything going on in your game, they can help you with.”
McKinlay is looking to improve all aspects of his game, although he did note that his driving and putting are a bit ahead of his short game.
“The challenge this year will be to improve and keep getting better,” he said.
“Right now it is my putting and driving. The last few tournaments, my putting has surprised me a few times.”
He added he intends to go, “To the course whenever I can and also going up there anytime I can to get comfortable.”
Broderson hopes to continually improve his game as well.
“I’m going to try to improve on last year’s provincials and just try to do better at the big tournaments. Keep on improving,” he said.
McKinlay added, “I would hope to end up playing professional somewhere or end up playing college. Hopefully it ends up good.”