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Fore! Local golfer chasing pro dreams with scholarship to Ohio

'The success I have had over the years has been attributed to my coach, Murray St. Onge' of Orillia, says 18-year-old who recently shone at national championship

After competing with the country’s top junior players, a local 18-year-old golfer is now setting his sights on a U.S. collegiate career.

Barrie native Mitch Brassard just returned from the Junior National Championships in Kamloops, B.C., where he tied for 29th in a field of 156 golfers.

Brassard shot rounds of 72, 71, 75 and had a bogey-free 68.

“It was a good event. I was very happy with how I played,” he said. “I qualified for the juniors by playing in a three-day tournament called NextGen Championships. The top six got to go to the event in Kamloops and I made it by tying for sixth.”

In August 2021, Brassard competed in the Ontario Men’s Amateur Championship at the Beach Grove Golf and Country Club in Tecumseh and fared well against the top amateurs in the country.

Brassard is now finished with high school and is headed to Ohio’s Tiffin University on a golf scholarship.

“I’m actually headed down there next week for school and will be representing them for Division 2 golf,” he said. “I’m really excited. I like new challenges, but I know it will be a lot of work.”

Being a collegiate golfer isn’t all nice walks on a beautiful golf course, but Brassard says he is ready for the challenge.

“We’ll practise every day during the weekdays. As a team we’ll do team workouts at 6 a.m, head to classes until the afternoon and then, after those, head back out to the course for more practice,” he said. “In the fall, I believe, the first five weekends, we travel to tournaments across different states. That will happen in the spring as well.”

While he has been playing for much of his life, Brassard said it wasn't until he met one man that his passion for the game really took off.

“The success I have had over the years has been attributed to my coach, Murray St. Onge,” he said. “I wouldn’t have been able to get where I am without him.”

While he wants to take his golf career one step at a time and focus on winning under the Tiffin University banner, Brassard does have pro hopes.

“It’s tough to make it, but, yes, for sure, going professional is the ultimate goal. It’s hard to make it, but if I do well in university and I see that professional golf is a future for me, then I’ll pursue it,” he said.