Talented golfer headed to Belton H.S.
Saturday, 09 June 2012 by Chuck Kelly
A talented young golfer with already-championship credentials is headed for Belton High School in the fall.
Fourteen-year-old Josh Stegall just finished the 8th grade at South Belton Middle School and has already tried out and made the Tiger golf team.
"I do expect Josh to be very good," commented BHS head boys golf coach Jim Hellums. "We took seven out of that class, three strong players and four with good potential, and Stegall is probably the best of the crew."
In seventh grade, Josh participated in several middle school athletics, including football, cross country and golf after playing recreational and select soccer for nine years.
He picked up a golf club for the first time one year ago when he decided to try out for the school's golf team. Bill Euler, the pro at Wildflower Country Club, took Josh under his wing to get him started and Jon Antunes of Heart of Texas Golf Academy was also his instructor.
Then, young Stegall's middle school coaches --- James Allison, Robert Batey and Ryan Rasar --- took over.
Josh has become so passionate about the game of golf that he has narrowed his focus to it alone, dropping the other sports to practice golf daily.
His golfing success the past three months shows that he evidently made the right decision.
March 29 Josh was Champion at the Midway Golf Tournament, played at Cottonwood Creek in Waco. He carded a 39 on nine holes.
April 16, he won the District Championship (Belton/Temple/Midway/Cove) on the Sammons course in Temple. He again fired a 39 on nine holes.
May 1, Josh finished fourth in the St. Mary's Golf Tournament, shooting a 44 on nine holes at Wildflower Country Club.
On May 21, the three Belton middle school coaches took all of the golfing girls and boys to the Colonial in Fort Worth, where the youngsters all had a blast and Josh had the pleasure of meeting professional golfing great Lee Trevino.
These middle school coaches truly make a positive impact in introducing golf to the youngsters and teaching them what they must know to be successful at the high school level.
"We have the potential to be good for quite a few years and a lot of that can be credited to the middle school coaches," Hellums said. "They're the grass roots of this system that produces these kids. The players learn good habits early instead of having to un-learn bad habits later."
BHS head boys golf coach Jim Hellums will be eagerly waiting for Josh Stegall and other freshmen-to-be to show up on the practice links next fall.