May 2, 2013
KNOXVILLE, Tenn. -- On Thursday, the Lady Vol golf team took a break from finals and studying to team up with the First Tee of Greater Knoxville.
The First Tee is a non-profit organization designed to help youth build character through the game of golf.
A total of 20 youth were on hand for a fun-filled afternoon at the Wee Course as the Lady Vols walked them through the basic components of golf.
"We're thrilled to do community service but if we can help out in golf specifically, we're happy to do that," head coach Judi Pavon said. "The First Tee program is for kids who maybe couldn't afford to play golf in other ways because it's such an expensive sport."
"They have these clinics for these kids ages 5-18 so today we were excited to be able to come out and work with them, talk about being a college golfer and then help them with their golf games," Pavon said.
First Tee's program director Reggie Newton got his start as a First Tee golfer and is grateful for UT's golf programs helping out.
"It's tremendous," Newton said. "I don't think the kids even realize how big it is because as a former college golfer, I know how busy those teams are and they're both highly ranked teams. It takes a lot of time and dedication for them to come out for one day and give us their time. It means a lot. It just shows that they care about the kids too and about the next generation of golfers."
"More important, it gives them somebody to look up to. They look up to me because I'm a coach, but when you see someone who's doing exactly what you want to do, their eyes light up and they listen. It's invaluable."
Tennessee heads to its 21st straight NCAA Regional May 9-11 in Auburn, Ala. UT has earned six top-10 tournament finishes, including two top-three finishes this season.
To find out more information about the First Tee program, visit First Tee of Greater Knovxille.