Tupelo’s Buckley wins event in consecutive years

By Kyle Alford/Special to the Journal

TUPELO – Hayden Buckley rebounded Wednesday for a two-day total of 144 to win his second straight “Pros of Tomorrow” golf event.
The Tupelo High player entered Day 2 at the Tupelo Country Club six strokes back at 75.
“You really have nothing to lose when you’re already behind. It just made me want to play that much better. I know there would be some high scores, so I just kept playing and hoping,” Buckley said.
Buckley believed he played good golf both days, but that it was all about his finish on his second round.
“I really feel like I played good on Tuesday, I just had a bad finish. Today I actually finished pretty good. The two days were about the same. I just made a few more putts today.”
Buckley finished the tournament at even par.
Kirk Reeder of Tupelo and Camden Backel of Madison entered Wednesday as the co-leaders with a 69. Backel shot seven over par Wednesday while Reeder finished eight over with a 148 and 149, respectively.
“I really think anybody has a chance of winning this event,” Buckley said. “I play the course everyday, and I’m pretty confident in my ability. I definitely felt like I had a good shot of winning it again this year.”
Buckley joins a group of “Pros of Tomorrow” victors, a group that includes pro golfer and 2012 Master Champion Bubba Watson. “It’s really amazing to know that he started-here, and to know where he is now. It gives me hope for my future.”
Tupelo native Blake Harris and Madison’s Matthew Scoville finished with a score of 147.
Carlee Nanney of Fulton won the girls division with a score of 160, while Columbus’s Mary Grace Caldwell finished second with with 180.