Starting out as a 10-year-old beginner golfer, the now 22-year-old college graduate now “pays it forward” by coaching both beginners and advanced players during the camp.
“I look forward to coming to golf camp every year, it is one of the highlights of my summer,” said the Chickasaw athlete.
Now a role model for younger Chickasaws, he hopes he can inspire young golfers to dream big.
“I always look forward to helping the kids. I want them to have the same opportunities I have had and to be able to discover their full potential.”
At golf camp, he helps kids with their long drive in the skills rotation.
“They all want to know how to hit the ball in the air instead of the ground. They get really excited when they hit the ball in the air for the first time.”
He takes pride in seeing the skills of returning golf campers improve.
“It’s nice to see their progress.”
Mr. Lance recently wrapped up a four-year stint on the East Central University Golf Team, where he was awarded a golf scholarship.
While playing for the Tigers, Mr. Lance had several top finishes in conference play and finished 59th at the NCAA Division II South Central Regional in 2010. He finished in a tie for 10th place at the 2009 PGA Minority Collegiate Tournament and he was four-time Native American National Champion.
This year, he helped the ECU men’s golf team finish fourth at Great American Conference Golf Championships in Hot Springs, Ark, after he tied for seventh place.
While at Sulphur, (Okla.) High School he placed in the top 10 at state for the Bulldogs, including one third-place effort. He was also a member of the Team Chickasaw Golf team.
Over 100 Chickasaw Kids hit the course at Golf Camp
THACKERVILLE, Okla. – Nine-year-old Anna Mae Palmer, Ada, Okla., has narrowed her future career choices down to two: a pediatrician or a professional golfer.
As a participant at Chickasaw Nation Golf Camp, conducted June 4-7 at the WinStar Golf Course, the Chickasaw student was able to sharpen her skills to be a contender on the greens.
Anna Mae was one of 133 Chickasaw students to attend golf camp, and she was grateful for the opportunity.
When asked her impressions of the WinStar Golf facility she had a simple answer: “We are pretty lucky to be here.”
Makenna Moore, 11, returned to golf camp for a second year to “meet new people and learn the sport.”
“I’m looking forward to playing again,” said the sixth grade Ardmore, Okla., student.
The camp is divided into two sessions; beginning and advanced.
About 83 beginners, ages 8-14, learned about chipping, putting and driving June 4 and 5. More than 50 advanced players perfected their golfing skills later in the week.
“Coming to golf camp is the only time I get to come play golf. Golf camp is neat, we have all these trainers here and I get to play this awesome sport,” said 15-year old Dillon Wilson, of Lone Grove, Okla.
Encouraged by veteran coaches and members of the East Central University Golf Team; students learned the fundamentals, rules, safety tips and etiquette of the game and gained confidence in their abilities.
East Central Golf Coach Danny Key, along with several other coaches has helped at Golf Camp for several years.
“I enjoy working with the kids every year. It is neat helping them from the first time they pick up a club. It’s also fun to work with the experienced golfers, giving them new tips and working with them.”
A small player-to-coach ratio ensures each camper receives individual attention.
For more information about Chickasaw Nation Youth programs, visit www.chickasaw.net.(Stories provided to us by the Chickasaw Times, you can read these and others @ http://www.chickasawtimes.net/)