Young golfer finishes season in style
Aparticipant in the Dufferin Heights junior golf program the past six years, 14 year-old Levi Coates of Way’s Mills capped a memorable season recently, teaming with Alexis Clement of Drummondville (Heriot Club) to win the Bantam division at the Quebec Inter-Regional Championships, held in Grand-Mere, near Shawinigan. Their performance helped the Eastern Townships team to finish second overall, its best result ever, with nine regions represented and Ottawa claiming top honours. Clement and Coates first won the “Alternate Shot” competition with a one-over par 72, then posted a six-under 65 to finish tied for first in the “Vegas” portion of the two-day event. The two youngsters each returned home with two championship trophies for their exploits.
Levi earned his spot on the E.T. team by finishing runner-up to Clement in the four-tournament regional tour throughout the summer, thanks to a tournament best 75 in the regional final at Royal Estrie in Asbestos, matching Clement, the latter winning three of the four regional events. Also contributing to the Townships’ fine showing were Milby’s Jeffrey Lebeau, son of former Montreal Canadien Stephen Lebeau, and Laurent Desmarches (Cowansville Club) in the Juvenile division, finishing second both days. Lebeau and Coates are in the Sports-Etudes program at La Ruche high school and are coached by long-time golf instructor Pierre Lallier.
Another highlight of Levi Coates’ summer was finishing runnerup to Brendan Smith in the Dufferin Heights Junior club championship. It was a 75 and a one-shot lead after day one for Brendan, the talented Ayer’s Cliff native, who then fired a 67 to outdistance Levi’s 77 and win the title.
Asked by the Stanstead Journal how Levi got into golf, the fourteen year-old replied: “My mom was a golfer when she was young so she signed us all up one year; I had just turned nine. This year I decided to take it more seriously and I did more tournaments.” The young golfer finds golfing “relaxing, and hard mentally. When you make bad shots you have to stay focused after. And I like the feeling when the ball goes really close to where you want it.” Levi will be continuing in the La Ruche program this year, going to a lot of tournaments and down to North Carolina for a week of training. “It’s sometimes really cold when we start our outdoor training. We have to wear mittens and tuques when we’re playing!” he concluded.
Levi Coates and Alexis Clement pose proudly after winning the “Alternate Shot” tournament at the Quebec Inter-Regional Golf Championships, a two-day event in which the boys topped all of their competition.