Tuscaloosa Academy third-grade girl plays golf on high school boys team

9-year-old turns heads on golf course

TUSCALOOSA, AL (WBRC) - Anna Beeker's swing is a thing of beauty.

"I love competing and I love the game," said Beeker.

The 9-year-old third grader from Tuscaloosa Academy started playing golf when she was 5 years old.

"My brother always played and I would beg my parents to let me play. Finally, they did and realized I was pretty good and then they bought me my own clubs," Beeker said.

As Beeker's passion for the game grew, she wanted to follow in her older brother's footsteps.

"He started playing high school golf when he was in fifth grade," Beeker said.

So now, the third grader is doing exactly that. Last year, Scott Taylor, head coach of the Tuscaloosa Academy high school boys golf team, saw Beeker practicing and was impressed by her swing.

"I watched her about this time last year. It's the way she hits the ball off the practice tee. It's impressive for any girl that age let alone a third grader. she hits like someone in junior high or high school," said Taylor.

Beeker, who attended a public school in Tuscaloosa last year, transferred to Tuscaloosa Academy this year and joined the high school boys golf team.

"At first I was nervous, but once you get in a routine, it becomes normal playing with all the boys," Beeker said.

"It's more cool than weird having my sister on the team. I like that we will have memories over the next four years," said Anna's older brother William Beeker.

Beeker has already made an impression on the golf course. As a third grader, she's  one of the top five scorers on the boys team shooting in the 90s.

"My goal is to shoot in the 80s," said Beeker.

Tuscaloosa Academy is part of the Alabama Independent School Association, and there's no age limit rule allowing Beeker to play with the boys.

"My ultimate goal is to one day play on the LPGA Tour," Beeker said.

Tuscaloosa Academy will compete at the AISA State Golf Championship in Troy at the end of April.

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