Rebel Signee Featured On Golfweek.com

By RAY McCARTHY
Assistant Editor

Sean Dale had an epiphany when he shot 80-84 at last year’s Verizon Junior Heritage to finish 44th in the 46-player field. The five-hour drive from Hilton Head Island, S.C., back to Jacksonville, Fla., left plenty of time for painful introspection and self-doubt.

“Me and my dad had a conversation about if I wanted to keep (playing competitive golf). I was tired of it, I was really frustrated,” Dale said, “but right before we got home, I said, Dad, I’m going to put everything into golf, I’m going to do everything I can to get better,’ and since then, I haven’t looked back.”

Dale, now ranked 11th in the Golfweek/Titleist Junior Rankings, has torn through junior tournaments in the past four months. He’s won three consecutive FCWT events, highlighted by a birdie Jan. 6 on the famed 18th hole at TPC Sawgrass’ Players Stadium Course to win the FCWT/Golfweek Boys Invitational. In the middle of that stretch, he made it to the finals of the AJGA’s Polo Golf Junior Classic.

“Since that day (at the Junior Heritage), he and I haven’t talked about it much,” Sean’s father, Bob, said. “His work ethic has dramatically changed. He’s worked hard on his game and hard on his body.”

Todd Anderson, the director of instruction at Sea Island Golf Learning Center, has been instrumental in Dale’s drastic improvement. Dale came to Anderson with a laid-off, flat position at the top of his swing, but Anderson has improved the plane of his backswing.

“I try to get my junior students to understand that golf is important, but at the same time, they have to understand how to operate on the golf course,” Anderson said. “I thought Sean was very hard on himself, not giving himself enough credit for good golf shots, and not being able to let go of the bad shots.”

In November, Dale entered the Polo at No. 38 in Golfweek’s rankings, but felt as if he belonged among the best after making the quarterfinals at the U.S. Junior.

“Before the U.S. Junior, I looked at Peter (Uihlein) and Bud (Cauley) as top junior golfers, and I didn’t consider myself anywhere near that,” Dale said, “but after I made it to the quarterfinals, it gave me a lot of confidence, saying, I made it farther than a lot of the good juniors.’ ”

Dale squeaked by Tommy Chung Hao Mou in his first match at Polo with what he called one of his worst rounds of the tournament. He then rattled off wins over Ping Invitational champion Gregor Main in the Round of 16, and avenged his loss to Wesley Graham in the U.S. Junior by beating Golfweek’s top-ranked junior, 3 and 2, in the Polo quarterfinals.

A birdie on the 17th hole of his semifinal match with William Kropp powered Dale to a 1-up victory and a berth in the final against Bjorn Akesson, where he lost, 3 and 2.

Dale had won the FCWT’s World Golf Village Open two weeks earlier thanks to a final-hole birdie. He used the momentum from his run at Polo to win two more FCWT events. He birdied his final two holes Dec. 2 to win the Grand Cypress Classic by two strokes, then closed the Golfweek Invitational at TPC Sawgrass with a birdie to win by one.

“It feels good (winning three times in a row),” Dale said. “You just have the confidence, and you just feel like you’re going to win.”

Dale is hoping his success will carry over to his freshman season at Ole Miss this fall. He’s set a personal goal to be named SEC Freshman Player of the Year, but knows he can learn a lot from the upperclassmen and head coach Ernest Ross.

“I’m going to take as much as advice from anyone I can,” Dale said.

Dale doesn’t think his mindset will change at all as he makes the move to college golf, though.

“I don’t feel any pressure when I go on the golf course,” he said.

Pressure is nothing when you’ve climbed from the bottom.



Ray McCarthy is a Golfweek assistant editor. To reach him e-mail rmccarthy@golfweek.com.
Posted: 2/22/2008


 

 

    • Game 3: Ole Miss 8, ECU 6

      Sunday, February 19, 2017 - Baseball

      p.p1 {margin: 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px; line-height: 16.0px; font: 14.0px Helvetica; color: #333333; -webkit-text-stroke: #333333} span.s1 {font-kerning: none; background-color: #ffffff} span.s2 {font-kerning: none} For the second-consecutive game, ECU held a lead in the late stages of the game. ECU... read more

    • Game 2: Ole Miss 3, ECU 2

      Saturday, February 18, 2017 - Baseball

      p.p1 {margin: 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px; font: 14.0px Helvetica} p.p2 {margin: 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px; font: 14.0px Helvetica; min-height: 17.0px} Ole Miss rallied from a two-run deficit in the late innings to knock off ECU 3-2 and clinch the... read more

    • Ole Miss 5, ECU 4

      Friday, February 17, 2017 - Baseball

      p.p1 {margin: 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px; font: 12.0px Helvetica} p.p2 {margin: 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px; font: 12.0px Helvetica; min-height: 14.0px} In a game that had the feel of an SEC Friday night showdown, baserunners were difficult to come by... read more

    • 2017 Ole Miss Baseball Walk Out Music

      Thursday, February 16, 2017 -

      With the 2017 Ole Miss Baseball season beginning tomorrow at Swayze Field (4 p.m. CT vs. No. 6 East Carolina), check out the always much-anticipated walk out music list. Which song is your favorite? Let us know on Twitter by... read more

    • Four Rebels Invited to the NFL Combine

      Monday, February 13, 2017 - Football

      p.p1 {margin: 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px; font: 14.0px Helvetica} p.p2 {margin: 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px; font: 14.0px Helvetica; min-height: 17.0px} Four Rebels will head to Indianapolis to take part in the NFL Combine in hopes of bolstering their draft... read more

    • What They're Saying: Men's Golf Sophomore Braden Thornberry

      Monday, February 13, 2017 - Men's Golf

      The breakout college golfer of the fall is trying to prove it wasn't a fluke. (@OleMissMGolf) https://t.co/S1IgwNJxmJ pic.twitter.com/p0IezRH1ul-- Ryan Herrington (@GWcampusinsider) February 6, 2017 .@tberrygolf enters the mix for this September at LACC.#WalkerCup Watch List: https://t.co/UPkkcOD3lX pic.twitter.com/0Sprbl7Qv4-- Golfweek (@golfweek) February... read more

    • Rebels Focus on Defense on Signing Day

      Wednesday, February 1, 2017 - Football

      p.p1 {margin: 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px; font: 14.0px Helvetica} p.p2 {margin: 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px; font: 14.0px Helvetica; min-height: 17.0px} Ole Miss' defense needed a shot in the arm after a 2016 season to forget. It began by retooling... read more

    • Engram Named a Top Performer by NFL Network's Mike Mayock

      Monday, January 30, 2017 - Football

      The Senior Bowl always offers players a chance to improve their draft stock by performing well against some of the best players in the nation. Evan Engram took advantage of that opportunity. NFL Network's draft expert Mike Mayock named Engram... read more

    • Know the Opponent: Texas A&M

      Wednesday, January 25, 2017 - Men's Basketball

      p.p1 {margin: 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px; font: 14.0px Helvetica} p.p2 {margin: 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px; font: 14.0px Helvetica; min-height: 17.0px} Know the Opponent: Texas A&M (10-8, 2-5) KenPom ranking: 64 Best win: vs. No. 50 Virginia Tech Worst loss:... read more

    • Rebels Impressing at East-West Shrine Game

      Thursday, January 19, 2017 - Football

      p.p1 {margin: 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px; font: 14.0px Helvetica} p.p2 {margin: 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px; font: 14.0px Helvetica; min-height: 17.0px} p.p3 {margin: 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px; font: 14.0px Arial; color: #222221; -webkit-text-stroke: #222221} span.s1 {font: 14.0px Helvetica; color: #000000;... read more

    • Former Rebel Coach Ron Aldy Honored at Kirk Academy

      Tuesday, January 17, 2017 - Women's Basketball

      Former Women's Basketball Head Coach Ron Aldy and his family at gym floor dedication at Kirk Academy today. pic.twitter.com/Ruyc9TFui5-- Holmes Athletics (@holmesathletics) January 14, 2017 p.p1 {margin: 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px; font: 14.0px Helvetica} p.p2 {margin: 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px... read more

    • Tunsil Named AFC East Rookie of the Year by ESPN

      Monday, January 16, 2017 - Football

      p.p1 {margin: 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px; font: 14.0px Helvetica} p.p2 {margin: 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px; font: 14.0px Helvetica; min-height: 17.0px} Miami Dolphins offensive lineman and Ole Miss' former blind side protector Laremy Tunsil was named AFC East rookie of... read more

    • Three Rebel Coaches Among Top-20 Recruiters Nationally

      Friday, January 13, 2017 - Football

      With the hiring of Jacob Peeler as wide receiver coach, #OleMiss now has three asst coaches ranked in @247Sports '16 Top 20 best recruiters.-- Brad Logan (@BradLoganCOTE) January 10, 2017 Ole Miss football bolstered its coaching staff by adding coaching... read more

    • Know the Opponent: Georgia

      Wednesday, January 11, 2017 - Men's Basketball

      p.p1 {margin: 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px; font: 14.0px Helvetica} p.p2 {margin: 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px; font: 14.0px Helvetica; min-height: 17.0px} Georgia (10-5, 2-1) KenPom ranking: 61 Best win: at No. 103 Auburn Worst loss: at No. 79 Oakland Ole... read more

    • Know the Opponent: Auburn

      Saturday, January 7, 2017 -

      p.p1 {margin: 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px; font: 14.0px Helvetica} p.p2 {margin: 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px; font: 14.0px Helvetica; min-height: 17.0px} Know the Opponent: Auburn (10-4) KenPom ranking: 105 Best win: No. 28 Texas Tech Worst loss: No. 172 Boston... read more

OFFICIAL STORE

GET SOCIAL

Twitter

  • Loading Tweets...
    1 second ago

Instagram

Facebook