2008-09-26 / Sports

Scholars'Academy High School Student's Success is Par for the Course

Xander is pictured holding his trophy with Scholars' Academy Athletic Director (left) Joseph Lunati and (right) Principal Brian O' Connell. Xander is pictured holding his trophy with Scholars' Academy Athletic Director (left) Joseph Lunati and (right) Principal Brian O' Connell. Tenth grader, Xander McDonald Smith, drives Rockaway's Scholars' Academy to the top of the city's PSAL Golf rankings. Golf has taken this honor student at the accelerated early college preparatory school across the city, during this past year. With wins at some of the most prestigious courses, Smith earned an invitation to the First Tee Open at Pebble Beach, where he played alongside pro Tom McKnight for a fourth place win overall.

On September 14, Smith captured first place in the International Junior Golf Tour which was held at Eisenhower Golf Course.

"My success has come from inspiration, hard work, and dedication. I try to practice every weekend and during the week for about 15 total practice hours per week," Smith said.

"I receive my inspiration from my late beloved grandfather, John McDonald, who was a scratch golfer. When I am facing a high pressure situation on the golf course, I try not to get nervous and say to myself, 'I am just playing golf. This is no big deal'. I am having fun."

Xander defines the well-rounded student at Scholars' Academy. The school looks forward to Smith having more top-notch performances this year, and in years to come.

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