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Thomas to play golf at Dordt College

Published: Friday, Feb. 26, 2016 10:59 a.m. CST
(Jocelyn Sheets/Daily News)
Newton High senior Payton Thomas signed a letter of intent to play golf next year at Dordt College in Sioux Center. On hand for Thursday’s signing were his parents, Austin Thomas and Stacey Klein.

After making visits to several colleges, Thomas settled on Dordt College in Sioux Center. He signed with the NAIA program to continue his competitive golfing career.

“There were several reasons I made this choice,” Thomas said. “I liked the golf coach at Dordt and the business professors were awesome too. I really respect the Christian values the college is based on.”

The Dordt Defenders compete in the Great Plains Athletic Conference. Mark Christians is the Defenders’ head coach. He is in his 12th season guiding the men’s golf team. In college, teams play a divided schedule — fall and spring.

“I’m excited about the challenge of college golf,” Thomas said. “I first picked up a golf club my sophomore year and I just loved the sport. In golf, there is always something you can work on to improve your game.”

Thomas said his short game — putting, pitching and chipping — was the best part of his golf game. He has played two years for Newton High in Class 4A, which were fall seasons. For his senior year, Newton is playing Class 3A golf which is a spring season.

As a junior, Thomas had an 18-hole average of 86 and his lowest score for 18 holes was 76. He said he was shooting for an average of 77 or 76 this season.

“Playing this spring will be different and I’m looking forward to it, but I do miss the challenge of 4A golf,” Thomas said.

Thomas plans to major in business at Dordt, a college his uncle attended. He is at the sone of Austin Thomas and Stacey Klein, both of Newton.

Contact Jocelyn Sheets at 641-792-3121 ext. 6535 or jsheets@newtondailynews.com

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