PORT ARTHUR —
On the heels of Braden Bailey's trip to the west coast playing in the First Tee Open at Pebble Beach, Nederland’s Felicia Sauceda just returned from her own golf trip to the east coast, participating in the 2012 Life Skills and Leadership Academy, July 25-31 on Long Island, N.Y.
Sauceda joined more than 90 other participants of The First Tee, ages 13-17, to participate in this national event.
"I had a great time and got to meet a lot of people - players and coaches - from all over the country. I played a lot more golf than I thought I would...just about every day, morning and afternoon. When we weren't on the golf course we were usually on the driving range,” Sauceda said.
The Academy, hosted by Nassau County, The First Tee of Metropolitan New York and Eisenhower Park Golf Course, provided participants valuable character education and leadership instruction through interaction with more than 24 coaches. The week-long event featured workshops, career exploration seminars, golf clinics and numerous other activities.
Frank Darby, the head golf coach at St. John's University addressed the group regarding what college golf coaches look for in a recruit and d uring some of their free time, the participants visited Nickerson Beach, the Firefighter's Museum and frequented the Recreation Center at Hofstra University.
“We are excited to have had the opportunity to host this year’s academy,” said Barry McLaughlin, executive director of The First Tee of Metropolitan New York. “This is the first time the event has been held at a municipal golf course. We are thankful to Nassau County and their patrons for allowing us the opportunity to use their facilities.”
It was the third major First Tee trip for Sauceda in the past three years. In both 2010 and 2011, she was selected to participate in the Champions Tour First Tee Open at Pebble Beach. Sauceda is a senior at Nederland High School.