Rabren’s all business

Published 12:04 am Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Straughn sophomore Brooks Rabren was all business after the 11th hole at the Robert Trent Jones Golf Trail at Cambrian Ridge on Saturday.

After making three straight bogeys on holes 9-11, Rabren refocused and made par on his final six holes to finish in first place at the State of Alabama Qualifying Tournament for the 2013 North South Junior Championship.

Rabren’s first-place finish in the age 16-19 division qualifies him to play in the North South Junior Championship on July 8-11, at Pinehurst Resort in North Carolina.

The SHS golfer shot a 79 for the day, just two shots better than second-place finisher Boo O’Pry of Salem.

“It was tough out there,” Rabren said about the qualifying tournament. “We got snowed on. There were only about 10 people in the tournament. I did well to shoot a 79 that day, just with the wind and everything.”

Rabren said, in addition to the win, that it was cold during the early part of the round, where he had five bogeys on the front nine.

“It played really tough early on because it was still really, really cold,” he said. “That was probably when it was the coldest. As the round went on, it may have warmed up five degrees. I don’t think it got above 40 while we were out there.”

Luckily, Rabren was able to finish the round strong.

“I made a few good pars to finish the round,” he said. “I just let my mind wander a little bit earlier in the round. I was able to re-focus and bring it home the last five or six holes.”

When not playing for Straughn, Rabren plays on the Southeastern Junior Golf Tour (SJGT).

Last fall, Rabren won two tournaments on the tour and this summer, he’ll be playing in a few events on the American Junior Golf Association.

Additionally, Rabren qualified to play in a tournament in Los Angeles, Calif., in June.

He said he doesn’t know if he’ll play in Los Angeles tournament, but added that he’ll potentially be playing in three tournaments this summer — two of which are the U.S. Junior Amateur Championship in Truckee, Calif., and the Calloway World Junior Championship in Sand Diego.

The North South Junior Championship qualifier on Saturday was a part of the SJGT.

The United States Open, a PGA and European Tour major championship, has been played at Pinehurst on several occasions.

“There’s a lot of good golf that’s been played there,” Rabren said. “I’m looking forward to playing there.”