Metropolitan Juniors Conquer 2024 Drive, Chip, & Putt Finals


Two St. Louis area golfers competed in the Drive, Chip, and Putt Finals at Augusta National on April 7, the Sunday before the Masters. Madison Pyatt and Caden Fehr both fought their way through three rounds of competition to make their way into the final field, earning them a spot to compete at one of the most prestigious courses in the country. It’s no secret the talent these kids have and the immense competition they have had to face. 


Beginning in May of last year, thousands of kids from around the country began their bid for Augusta at Local Qualifying Rounds. The top three in each gender’s age division would move on to the next round with the fourth and fifth place sitting as alternates. Next would be Sub-Regionals, where only the top two would move on and the third and fourth place would become alternates. Then in the last step to get to Augusta, the Regionals in the fall would determine which kids would make their way to Georgia. Players must finish on top of the leaderboard to earn the coveted spot in the Finals. 


Following a long summer of competition, 80 Finalists across 8 Divisions had earned their spot, including Madison and Caden. The two would represent the Upper Midwest Region and don the purple uniform given to them. Competitors would arrive at Augusta National, driving down Magnolia Lane as the day started. Each division of golfers would compete in the Driving and Chipping portion of the competition at the designated practice facilities, before moving on to the Putting portion on the famed 18th green. Spectators, family, and friends gathered in each area to cheer on the kids. But getting to have a supporter of your choice stand with you inside the ropes and carry your bag throughout the competition, both Caden and Madison had their fathers standing next to them all day. It was an exciting day for everyone and both junior golfers put forth an incredible performance. Each of their journeys are something to be proud of.


Madison Pyatt of Eureka, MO started her journey on July 13, 2023 at Eagle Springs Golf Course. In this Local Qualifier, Madison raked in 115 points - 15 in Driving, 45 in Chipping, and 55 in Putting - to sit comfortably in first place and move to the next stage. Sub-Regionals took place on August 10 at Sunset Hills Country Club, where Madison once again dominated her field. She earned 105 points here - 29 in Driving, 40 in Chipping, and 36 in Putting - which gave her the first place qualifying slot 37 points above second place. The last hurdle on October 1 at TPC Deere Run was the Regional Qualifier. Here, Madison beat the competition by 9 points with a total of 117 points - 41 in Driving, 26 in Chipping, and 50 in Putting. This would send her to Augusta National. 


Once in Augusta, Madison knew what she would need to do. With a change in the points system, the margins were narrowed for the Girl’s 7-9 division. Madison stepped up to take her drives, producing a drive of 195.9 yards followed by a drive of 198.7 yards. The latter would send her to the top after the first segment of the competition with the longest drive of her division and 10 points on the board. Next up, the chipping portion. Her first chip rolled within 10’ 6” of the hole, and her second chip rolled to 4’ 9”. Together this produced a total of 15’ 3” to tie for 3rd in the chipping session and narrowly stay in 1st. Then it came down to putting on the 18th green. Players got one chance on a 30 foot putt and one chance on a downhill 15 foot putt. Madison knocked her 30 foot putt into 7’0 and followed it up by hitting her 15 footer into 2’7”. With this final putt, Madison placed 3rd in putting to add 8 points to her total and clenched the title with 25.5 out of 30 points. From Eureka to Augusta, Madison will return home with the hardware. 


Caden Fehr of Wildwood, MO started his journey on June 1, 2023 at Cape Girardeau Country Club. At this Local Qualifier, Caden earned 153 points - 52 in Driving, 60 in Chipping, and 41 in Putting - to finish in first place and move on to the next stage. Next was the Sub-Regionals at Sunset Hills Country Club on August 10. Caden earned 123 points - 33 in Driving, 25 in Chipping, and 65 in Putting - to squeeze into the second place qualifying spot by 8 points. Swinging into Regionals on October 1 at TPC Deere Run, Caden had his work cut out for him, but he rose to the occasion. Caden battled for 161 points - 61 in Driving, 35 in Chipping, and 65 in Putting - to slip into first place by 5 points. He would find himself sitting in Augusta in a few short months. 


The day finally arrived for Caden and he was ready to put up a fight. He knew he would have to give it his all in the Boys’ 14-15 division, especially with the points change. In the first group of the day to take the course, Caden delivered a first drive of 240.1 yards, followed by a second drive of 237.9 yards. Taking the longer of the two, he sat in 7th place after the driving segment with 4 points. Then they moved on to the chipping portion of the day, where his first chip rolled to 5’ 9”. Knowing he wasn’t ready to give up, Caden’s second chip rolled in to 1’ 4”, bringing his total to 7’ 1” to place 2nd in chipping. Adding those 9 points to his total, he moved up the leaderboard into 5th place. Only one chance left to make a move, Caden made his way to the 18th green for putting. Caden stepped up to take his 30 foot putt, rolling it to 3’ 9”. He followed that by putting the 15 footer into 1’ 8”, which would bring his total to 5’ 5” to finish in 5th place in putting. These 5 points did help him to move up the leaderboard one more spot and finish the competition in 4th place with 18 out of 30 points. He may not be coming home with hardware, but his determination and dedication were clear.


What an experience this was for these two junior golfers and their families. Following the conclusion of the championship on Sunday, players and their immediate family were invited to attend the Monday and Tuesday Practice Rounds of the Masters. This gave them the opportunity to take in the scenes and see some of their favorite players, while getting to envision themselves back to play the course one day. The light of Madison and Caden has shone bright on a national stage and there is no doubt to their ability. The future of these two is sure to be nothing short of incredible and we can’t wait to watch them on their journey.

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