DOTHAN, Ala. (WDHN) — The 73rd annual Press Thornton Future Masters is now in full swing at Dothan Country Club.
The tournament field is made up of some of the best junior golfers from all over the world so the competition is fierce.
This year’s Future Masters is more selective than ever before making for even more competitive play.
“It’s always a good field, but the smaller it is it moves quicker on the golf course,” Tournament Director Kevin Klein said. “Just better players all the way around and the scores are indicative of what’s happening so far.”
About 450 golfers from 30 states and five countries make up the tournament.
The 11 and 12-year-old age groups and 13 to 14-year-old age groups finished up their second rounds Monday. The ten and under age group teed off for round one.
The current 10U leader, came back to redeem himself from last year when he placed 11th.
“I like it,” 10U golfer Coley Cassedy said. “It means a lot because it makes me think about the Masters. There’s a lot of good competition and I would want to go there one day.”
Cassedy travels just over five hours from Augusta, Georgia, to get to the Circle City.
His mother says the distance is worth the Future Masters experience.
“The competition is amazing and this actual tournament is not commercial, they really put a lot of work and a lot of effort into it and it really shows the boys what they can accomplish,” Cassedy’s mother Selena Haskins said.
For others, they need to look no further than their backyard for this level of play.
One local player improved his round one score by six strokes compared to last year.
Dothan Country Club is his home course, which works in his favor for this tournament.
“I kind of know which way all the putts go,” 10U golfer Wiley Alford said. “I just have that advantage of knowing everything and how everything works out.”
Alford and Cassedy are two of many returning players.
Tournament organizers say the amount of players who return to the Future Masters is a testament to how the tournament can set a young golfer up for future success.
“It’s a never-ending story,” Klein said. “It keeps building on itself and it’s coming back year after year after year. It’s volunteers, the same guys all the time. It’s just a great thing for Dothan. It’s a great thing for junior golf.”
Tuesday a winner will be crowned in the 10U, 11-12, and 13-14 age groups.