One by one, members of the new Northeast Alabama Community College golf teams came forward for a photo and then signed their names.
What they signed was a letter of intent, the first athletic scholarships issues by NACC in more than three decades.
“This is the first intercollegiate team we’ve had since the 1980s,” said NACC president Dr. David Campbell. “I’m looking forward to seeing some matches.”
The new NACC golf program held an official signing ceremony for its golfers on campus Thursday afternoon.
“This is an exciting day for me, these student-athletes and for the college,” said NACC head coach Darrell Kirk. “We’re about to get this thing kicked off, or teed off I guess I should say. It’s very exciting.”
NACC announced in May that it was forming a golf program and would field men’s and women’s teams. Kirk held two open tryouts in June and will have a men’s team with seven golfers and a women’s team with four.
Signing golf scholarships to play for the men’s team were Austin Webb of Section, Corey Wheeler, Caleb Little and Cory Guffey of Pisgah, Trevor Gibson of Rainsville (Plainview High School) and Ethan Everett of Trenton, Georgia (Dade County High School). Signing for the women’s team were Adrianne Fox of Fort Payne, Tatum Jones of Crossville and Bailey Raulston of South Pittsburg, Tennessee. North Sand Mountain alum Hunter Hill will play for the men’s team and Pisgah alum Kelsey Draper for the women’s team will play as a walk-ons because they had previously received academic scholarships to NACC.
“We’re extremely excited to have golf as part of our offerings for our students,” said NACC athletic director Chad Gorham.
NACC will compete in the Alabama Community College Conference, which competes on the national scale in the National Junior College Athletic Association.
NACC’s home course is Dogwood Hills Golf Resort and Gardens in Flat Rock. Dogwood Hills was donated to the Northeast Alabama Community College Foundation several years ago by owners Doris and the late Bryce Slater.
“Mrs. [Doris] Slater played a major role in this [golf program] happening,” Gorham said. “We really appreciate her.”
NACC’s first event of the fall season is the Wallace State Men’s Fall Golf Invitational Sept. 10-12 at Cross Creek Golf Course in Cullman. The NACC women’s team plays in the Wallace State Women’s Fall Golf Invitational at Cross Creek Sept. 17-19.
NACC starts official team practices on Aug. 24.
Jason Bowen is the sports editor of The Daily Sentinel in Scottsboro.