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Wellesley golfer claims MJT title in Carlisle

Wellesley’s Andrew Rouble took up golf four years ago, opting a couple of years later to throw himself into the sport in earnest. Now, his hard work has paid off, as the 17-year-old won the junior boys title at the Maple Leaf Junior Golf Tour event last weekend at the Carlisle Golf & Country Club.

He posted the low round on the tourney’s first day – a 65 – eventually claiming the title by one shot with a round of 76.

It’s Rouble’s second year on the tour, one with far more activity than last year’s pandemic-reduced schedule.

“Last year, there probably weren’t as many events and the amount of people in the events was limited. So coming out this year was a lot different just because there was more competition, more players, better players, which made it a lot harder to win and made it a lot more fun to compete,” he said of his experience with the MJT series.

“I first started competitive golf two years ago. I knew I enjoyed golf, so I started going to tournaments, but the competitive stuff didn’t come until last year – I really put a lot of time and effort into my summers and winters and into being good at golf, and it really paid off this year. All the work I put in last year and this year really paid off this year because I’ve been playing pretty well.”

Where hockey was his focus in the past, golf is now his game. In that, he followed in the footsteps of his father and grandfather.

“My dad and my grandpa have always been golfers, so just seeing them play golf kind of inspired me to also play golf – that’s what kind of started it.”

Now, the sport is a year-round activity for Rouble, who’ll be entering Grade 12 next month at Waterloo Oxford District Secondary School.

He attends the Ontario Golf Academy at Whistle Bear Golf Club, his home course these days.

“They have a little shack that you hit balls out into the snow during the winter, so that allows all of us juniors to practice during the winter and keep our game at top notch.” Throughout the year, he practices twice a week with his coach, Mike Martz.

The goal is to keep improving his game, following where it may lead.

“I plan on playing college golf. I’m going to Grade 12 this year, and after Grade 12 I plan on going to school, playing college golf. That’s a big, big thing for me. That’s one of my biggest dreams,” said Rouble.

For now, it’s all about the summertime schedule of golf, golf and more golf. This weekend, he’s part of the MJT competition at the Lakeridge Links Golf Club in Brooklin. It’s a busy schedule.

“I have a couple tournaments coming up on the MJT tour, but I just got back from the Canadian Junior Championship, which was in Quebec, and I also played in the Ontario Junior Championship, which was at Whistle Bear. So those are two kind of big accomplishments for me this year,” he said.

“This time of year… I’m in a golf tournament almost every weekend depending on if it’s the MJT tour or some provincial or Canadian tournament.”

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