Friday, May 30, 2014
Georgetown High School’s Evan Runion signed to play golf for Spartanburg Methodist College this week.
“Four years ago I was surfing,” Runion said. “I never thought I’d be playing golf for college.”
Bulldogs coach Kaith Young said Runion has “natural ability.”
“He’s only been playing this game for three-and-a-half years,” Young said. “Most people play this game their entire lives and never get to a certain level that he’s already at.”
Two years ago Runion realized his ability could lead to a college scholarship.
“I was working really hard so hopefully I’d make it,” he said.
Young has known the Runion family for years, and said as good a golfer as Evan is, he’s a better person.
“Before I ever knew about his golf game I knew about his character and his ability, just as a good person. He’s an upstanding young gentleman. He comes from an upstanding family. That was first things first. Before I ever saw him take a golf swing.”
Runion likes the “adrenalin” of competing rather than just playing a friendly game.
“It’s a lot different,” he said. “It’s a lot more pressure because you’re playing for a team.”
Young said Runion is a great teammate and a “role model” for the younger players.
“He’s always willing to help them out … Evan makes sure he talks to them, really gives them advice.”
During the spring high school season, Runion trained about five hours a day after school when the team didn’t have a match.
Young said Runion trained every day, no matter what the weather was.
“That’s what it takes for this game,” Young added.
All the training paid off as Runion competed for Class AAA Lower State and State titles.
Runion said the hardest part of working toward a college scholarship was keeping up with his classwork.
“You’ve got to keep up your grades while you’re training … because you miss a lot of school.”
His advice to his younger teammates who want to play at the next level?
“Study as hard as you can because that’s the only thing that’s going to get you in the big schools.”
Runion picked Spartanburg Methodist for its small size and plans to study marketing.
Young has no doubt Runion will be successful.
“Golf is grind, mentally. .. 90 percent is between the ears. And he’s got it,” Young said. “The sky’s the limit as far as his game is concerned.”