The Charles R. Drew Public Charter School’s Varsity Boys Golf Team in Atlanta, which has all Black players and an all Black coaching staff, has recently won the State Championship, making them the first to do so in the state of Georgia. They also made history as the first-ever Atlanta Public School team to win a State Championship in golf.
The team made a notable win after beating the two-time defending state champions by more than 15 strokes. They finished strong this year after coming in fourth last year.
“We’re making history,” Anthony Ford, a senior on the team, told Because of Them We Can. “We’ve got even bigger stakes [on] us now, going to the national championship. Being the only Black team there, it means a lot. We’ve got a lot of people rooting for us.”
The team’s coach, Nyre Williams, was a former professional golf player since 2003 after he went to Tennessee State University on a golf scholarship. He is also the director of The First Tee of East Lake Foundation, a youth development program that mentors and teaches golf to young people.
All the boys on the Drew Charter School’s golf team are members of The First Tee of East Lake, where they were taught not only how to play golf, but also encouraged about life goals and healthy habits.
Aside from their recent win, the boys have also received several opportunities such as scholarships to prestigious institutions, travel across the country, and access to elite golf academies.
“The biggest highlight would be the capacity to teach these men things they wouldn’t have an opportunity to learn outside of the game,” Williams said in an interview with Blavity. “This platform has allowed them to recognize their worth and aspire to goals they wouldn’t have otherwise thought of accomplishing.”