Carter McLean of Hays finished runner-up in the National Amateur Disc Golf Tour (NADGT) championships that concluded Sunday in Austin, Tex.
McLean, 15 and a student at North Wilkes High School, competed in the junior boys division for ages 18 and younger. He finished the three-round tournament at 11 below par, behind winner Finn Sullivan of Arcata, Calif., who was -23.
As a 2-year-old, McLean bettered a world record in mini-disc distance by 50%. After a decade of inactivity, he took up the sport again in 2020 and went from a player rating of 734 (novice) in August 2020 to a current rating of 954 (advanced).
McLean faced off against 41 other junior boys from across the country. There were 1,268 players overall in 11 divisions who qualified for the NADGT finals by earning points in NADGT events.
A June NADGT qualifier at Rolling Pines Disc Golf Course in Wilkesboro netted invites to Austin for McLean and married couple Martin and Casey Olivares of Wilkesboro.
McLean is the fourth-ranked junior disc golfer in North Carolina, and only one 15-year-old — Abel Boyd of Raleigh — is rated higher.
Carter and his father, Lance McLean of Hays, competed in the N.C. Youth Disc Golf Championships in Raleigh this summer and won the parent/child doubles competition by 10 strokes. Carter finished third in the 15U singles division.
The NADGT began as the Next Generation Tour in 2016 and bills itself as the first nationwide amateur disc golf tour, with over 150 events in 2020-21. The NADGT has awarded almost $1 million in prizes in its first five years.