Alex Nielan '13 wins pair of New England golf tournaments
Alex Nielan '13 deserves credit for recognizing he needed to challenge himself on the golf course.
And the Wilbraham & Monson Academy senior-to-be credit deserves credit for something else as well – for becoming a good, consistent golfer.
In his first four 2012 New England Junior PGA Golf Tournament events, Alex has won twice and placed runner-up by one stroke the other two times.
“I wasn't sure how well I'd do,” Alex said. “My game's improved significantly since last year. I didn't know how competitive I was going to be, but after the second tournament I realized how competitive I could be. I've really pushed myself. I've kind of surprised myself, but as of now I think I can be better, too.”
Alex wants to play golf in college. To do so, however, he believed he needed to do more than hit the links with his buddies in the summer. He needed to compete, and with something at stake.
“I felt I needed to be more competitive for college golf so I decided to join the tour and my dad supported me,” said Alex, who is considering attending Penn State University, St. Lawrence University, Clemson University and Skidmore College. “As I've become more serious about college golf, I realized I needed to do something over the summer.”
Alex won his first N.E. Junior PGA event in New Bedford June 18, and came right back in his next tournament to win in Plymouth. He followed those performances with second-place showings July 5 at Chelmsford and July 9 at Tewksbury. He's in contention for the circuit's Player of the Year. He plans to play eight more events on the 2012 tour.
Like any golfer, regardless of age or experience, consistency is the key. After a slow start to the season, Alex has found that consistency, to the point where he knows what's going to happen on just about every shot.
“As my game's improved I've become more consistent with it,” said Alex, who has a 4.5 handicap. “During the WMA season, I wasn't warmed up yet. I wasn't into it until the last few matches when I started to play some good golf. Now that I'm really in the midst of the season, I'm pretty controlled with my shots.”