Players to Watch: Cameron Young, Fordham
Cameron Young ended his freshman season at Fordham Prep on top of the high school circuit. The golf prodigy followed up a CHSAA team title by capturing the Catholic state title and the Federation crown.
It turned out to be just the beginning.
In three months, Young, 15, went from promising junior to trophy-hoarding amateur, emerging as one of the premier high school athletes in the Tri-State.
“I definitely exceeded my expectations,” said Young, a Scarborough native who began making a name for himself in 2011. “I feel like I backed it all up this year. Sometimes you hope to live up to people’s expectations. And I think I have.”
Young’s 2012 resume ranks among one of the best any junior the region has seen in the past decade.
The highlight came in June when he qualified for the U.S. Junior Amateur Championship in New Hampshire, a prestigious USGA event that attracted the best 156 junior golfers from around the world. Young finished tied for 18 th after the second qualifying round to earn a spot in the match play tournament. He was beaten in the opening round of 64.
Young’s victories this summer included the Hochster Memorial at the famed Quaker Ridge Golf Club, the Brae Burn Invitational and the Mittlemark Invitational at Fenway Golf Club. In all three events, he was one of, if not the, youngest competitor in the field.
“There is really nothing wrong in his game,” said Brewster native Mike Miller, 20, who was also a renowned junior golfer. “When I was 15, I didn’t have the maturity that he does. I know he lost in the U.S. Junior, but I think he’s going to win one at some point.
“It’s been fun to watch him grow as a player.”
Miller is rather familiar with Young’s grit as a golfer. Last year, Young became the youngest winner of the Westchester Amateur Championship, defeating Miller in the semifinal in a round in which Miller shot 69.
“That match (in 2011) was about as good as I could play,” Young said. “It was my day.”
This summer, Miller got his revenge, defeating Young in the final of the Westchester Am.
The match was part of a grueling summer schedule for Young. He estimated he played roughly 20 competitive rounds in both June and July, and was close to that number again in August.
“I like playing a lot. I get into a rhythm. I would like to maybe cut it down a little bit next year so I have some more time to practice.”
Young certainly has the opportunity to do that. He’s the son of Sleepy Hollow Country Club head professional David Young, who’s also an accomplished player. The family lives on the grounds of the club, or as Cameron puts it: “500 yards from the practice tees.”
“He gets home sometimes and if there’s 20 minutes until the sun goes down, he’s out here hitting the balls for those 20 minutes,” David Young said recently while watching Cameron on the club’s driving range.
“I love playing,” Cameron said. “My parents have never forced me. I never get tired of it.”
Young enters the upcoming school year as one of the region’s most talked about and dominant athletes. His future seemingly gets brighter every day.
“I would like to take it into college,” Young said. “Obviously, being a pro is a dream. But you never know.”
Email Kevin Devaney Jr. at firstname.lastname@example.org