Age is nothing but a number.
That proved to be the case at Ojibwa Golf on Friday afternoon, as 11-year-old Charlie Allen held his own and then some despite being the youngest player in his group by far at the Chippewa Valley Golf Association Juniors tournament.
Allen shot a 70 while playing among 14 and 15-year-olds. The youngster from North Oaks, Minn. played impressively all day, continuing a solid season of play in the CVGA Juniors.
Allen was introduced to the sport at the age of 3, and has been playing ever since.
“My dad (got me into it), because he’s played for a while. He kind of taught me and I enjoyed it, so I kept going,” Allen said.
He said he plays just about every day, and it showed at the Juniors tournament. He competed at a level well beyond his years, proving just how talented he is.
A lack of 18 hole tournaments for kids his age in his home state brought Allen over to Wisconsin to play in CVGA events this summer.
“In Minnesota there’s no 18 holes (tournaments for 11-year-olds), so I’d have to play on a par three course for nine holes. So my dad said we could go to the CVGA and try there,” he said.
His father, Tim Allen, said he’s been enjoying watching Charlie play.
“It’s fun, it’s a lot of fun,” he said. “Golf’s an individual sport, so they’ve got to go out there and fend for themselves, so it’s great to see him do that.”
Charlie said he still wants to improve on some things in his game.
“First off, I want to work on staying calm during the whole round, even if I’m having a bad day,” he said with a smile. “If I can do that, I think I can have bad front nines turn into decent back nines.”
That’s a mature mindset for someone so young to have, and it has paid dividends this summer. On June 29, he shot the lowest score (83) in the age 14-15 field at Colfax. The week prior, he came in second place in his age division at Lake Wissota with an 86. In total, he had locked up three top-three finishes in the CVGA entering Friday’s tournament.
As the youngest player in his division, he’s had a good experience playing alongside the older kids.
“The big deal is that the kids he’s played with have all been good kids, supportive. Nobody has said ‘who’s this punk coming from the Cities’ or whatever. He’s had a blast with these guys,” Tim said.