The student news site of James Bowie High School

The Dispatch

The student news site of James Bowie High School

The Dispatch

The student news site of James Bowie High School

The Dispatch

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Senior golfer makes a mark on an illustrious career

Although his high school golf career has come to a close, Payne still gives every golf shot his 100 percent effort.
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Austin Ikard
Being the senior captain, Payne’s main goal is to keep the team close together and show leadership examples.

Driver in hand, focusing on the target, senior Alex Payne sends the ball soaring through the air with a satisfying whoosh. Although his high school golf career has come to a close, Payne still gives every golf shot his 100 percent effort. Payne has been a member of the golf team all four years of high school, competing on Varsity 2 as a freshman and sophomore before being moved up to Varsity 1 for the last two years, where he has played a significant role in the team’s success.

“I think this was one of the best seasons we have had; my favorite season out of all four years,” Payne said. “It was cool watching Collin and Knox duel it out all season, which made it such a fun year. I was playing some good golf in the fall and kind of struggled towards the end of the year. That is how golf works, though; you will have good and bad days.”

Payne plans to attend Texas Tech in Lubbock this fall, majoring in finance. Lubbock consists of multiple courses, including one right off campus, where many students and staff tee it up every weekend.

“I plan to play as much as I can in college with my buddies,” Payne said. “It is super convenient in the area that I am in; there are a lot of golfers in the area, and there is access right there, right off campus. Golf can also help me with future business affairs and job warrants, which is cool to think about.”

Being the senior captain, Payne’s main goal is to keep the team close together and show leadership examples. This year’s Bowie golf class set new heights, with plenty of incoming freshmen joining the class in the fall. Payne helped with tryouts and led by example at practice.

“My goal as captain this year was to just really lift up team spirits,” Payne said. “Especially in a tournament setting, when it is super early in the morning, I love cracking jokes and kind of just keeping everyone less nervous and more calm for the upcoming tournament.”

Along with golf, Payne enjoys lifting weights, which has translated into massive success on the course. He began lifting weights in 2020 and has now been lifting weights nearly everyday for the last several years.

“Working out and filling my frame has helped me a ton in developing my golf game,” Payne said. “It really helped me keep my club face under control and really dial back my energy usage, keeping me more fresh for every shot I take.”

The golf team racked up a record two team wins this year. Both wins came in the spring at the Hutto Invitational and the Anderson Scramble, where the team has won back-to-back years. Coach Sam Miller has been coaching golf for eight years. Along with being the main golf coach, he also teaches algebra and coaches football.

“This was the most successful golf season since I have been coaching here, both as a team and from an individual perspective,” Miller said. “In the years past, we have had a few top-three finishes but have never won multiple tournaments while being in contention in every tournament we enter ourselves in.”

Miller has a much different job compared to fall coaching. His job is to get the team ready for districts. The biggest and final tournament of the season happens at Lost Pines Golf Course. This year marked the last year for Payne, who has been a consistent performer on a very tough course.

“Alex first played the course as a freshman,” Miller said. “Just like almost everyone, he struggled at first. But what I love about Alex is his attitude; he never got down on himself, and he has played great there the last several times we have made that trip. I try to take down the team and play a few tournaments just to get used to the course. Alex has done a great job adjusting to the course and putting up some good scores.”

Junior Jack Considine, a teammate of Payne, has been a member of the golf team for two years, with this being his first year as a full-time player.

“Coming from a mostly basketball background, it was hard to really improve at golf,” Considine said. “I’ve spent a lot of time hitting balls next to Alex since joining the team, and he has definitely helped me in a lot of aspects, not just in golf but outside of golf stuff as well.”

Considine competed on the second team this year, ending the year in the 6th spot after starting the year around 9th or 10th in the line-up. The drastic improvement sets up Considine to be a varsity 1 player for his whole senior year.

“I am going to miss Alex’s leadership,” Considine said. “He kept the team in a joking and happy mood all the time, which kind of just calmed me down, especially in my first few tournaments where I was super nervous. I am excited to try and fill his shoes next year, as a spot is going to open up for me. I think he has done a great job preparing everyone to play the best possible, and I know it’s going to benefit us in the long run.”

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