Smacking golf balls and making friends at the USGLL National Cha - WBNG.com: Binghamton-area News, Weather, Sports

Smacking golf balls and making friends at the USGLL National Championships

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GREENE (WBNG) - The eighth annual USGLL National Championships teed off on Tuesday at the Genegantslet Golf Club in Greene. Teams from the Southern Tier and Long Beach, California, consisting of kids ages seven to 14, are competing in a three-day Ryder Cup format tournament. 

"Each team is a team of six kids," said National Championship Tournament Director Robert Warholic. "They are grouped up into different formats. We have singles play, we have scramble play or best ball, and then we'll have alternate shot. They compete against each other in a team format for points."

It's the first year the championships are being played at the Genegantslet and the young golfers know what they like in a golf course. 

"The greens are fast, they are hard, and that's how I like some courses," said Long Beach, California resident Lance Nguyen. "So, it will be a challenge for me."

 "I like the challenging part of it," said San Pedro, California resident Ethan Schwichtenbrg. "Just trying to do my best out there."

"It's really nice," said Johnson City resident Joseph Miller. "I like it. I've been able to hit some good shots."

The ridiculously low scores these kids are putting up aside, the experience is about more than just a game.

,"Meeting all these new people and coming all the way to the opposite side (of the country)," said Long Beach resident Alyson Sor. "It was awesome."

"From coast to coast, which is cool because now you have eight year old kids that will be texting, emailing, instagraming each other," said Warholic.

Make no mistake though, these kids are playing to win.

"It's really fun," said Schwichtenbrg. "I get more tournament experience from playing here."

"We have our trophy that has all the plaques from all the previous year's champions on it and they want to raise that trophy and win it," said Warholic.

The tournament ends on Thursday with the semifinals and finals. 

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