17-year-old debuts at HP Byron Nelson Golf Championship



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Posted on May 15, 2014 at 10:45 PM

IRVING -- It was a day Scottie Scheffler will never forget.

“At the beginning I was pretty nervous,” Scheffler said. “I actually settled into my round pretty well. I just wasn't playing good.”

The 17-year-old senior from Highland Park High School is the youngest golfer in this year’s HP Byron Nelson Championship. He was added to the field on a sponsor's exemption.

“It was fun,” Scheffler said. “There were a lot of people out watching so that was a good experience.”

Scheffler is the reigning U.S. Junior Amateur champion and recently won his third state UIL championship. His golf coach Randy Smith from Royal Oaks Country Club says this doesn't compare to what he's experienced in the past.

“It's a little different level of competition, just a little bit,” Smith said. “But I tell you this, they had Oreo cookies out here on the practice tee, you need a shot of his bag.”

“He loves them,” Scheffler’s sister Callie said. “Double stuff is his favorite. It's a little surprise. He doesn't know they're in there.”

His sister was caddying while the rest of his family wasn't far away.

“It’s really good seeing him with my daughter Callie,” his mother Diane Scheffler said. “Watching them both together really touches my heart.”

Scheffler has drawn comparisons to Jordan Spieth, who also made his debut as a 16-year-old at the Byron Nelson in 2010.

“He's definitely got the game for it, there is no doubt,” Spieth said. “He's got the mental attitude; he's got the confidence for it. I've watched him quite a while and played against him and he's probably beaten me more than I've beaten him.”

So with his teammates from the Highland Park golf team looking on, Scheffler shot a one over par 71.

“No one ever gets to do this,” Jake Potter, a teammate from Highland Park High School said. “It’s even fun for us watching him.”