Riverhead High School seniors score caddie scholarships

Two Riverhead High School seniors who caddie at Friar’s Head golf course on Sound Avenue in Baiting Hollow have been awarded full college scholarships, and both are planning to head to Rutgers University in New Jersey.

Luke Richard and Colin Lynch will each receive a full housing and tuition scholarship from the Western Golf Association’s Evans Scholars Foundation in partnership with the Long Island Caddies Scholarship Fund.

“It’s life changing for these kids — a full 100% scholarship to school — and it’s pretty amazing,” said Adam McDaid, the pro at the Friar’s Head.

Richard and Lynch were working out together at a gym on Main Street in February when they each got word of their scholarships.

“When we found out together, it was really an unbelievable feeling,” Richard said. “It was a massive burden lifted off both of our shoulders. College nowadays can set you back in a lot of debt, and scholarships are there to help with the burden of that debt. And the scholarship me and Colin received is a life-changing one, because it will eventually, hopefully lead us into no debt at all.”

Luke Richard (courtesy photo)

Both teenagers plan to study finance, after spending so much time caddying for the wealthy members of the club.

“I work for a lot of big finance people, people that have been in the market and have a lot of power in the market,” Richard said. “So it’s really inspired me to try to follow in their footsteps and hopefully one day reach the status of a member at an amazing golf club like Friar’s Head.”

Richard plans to study finance with a minor in accounting. Lynch is considering business management “with a little bit of economics.

“All the members at Friar’s Head are big business guys, so it kind of inspired me to want to do business,” Lynch said.

Colin Lynch (courtesy photo)

Mr. McDaid said both boys are excellent caddies.

“We do have a lot of our members here that are in the financial sector, and these young kids get exposed to these titans of industry while they’re out on the golf course. So to be able to spend time with certain people, where other people would not normally have any access, is a pretty great privilege that they have. To learn how to speak to people and to just be a sponge out there and kind of absorb what’s going on. It’s pretty great for them.”

The foundation was created in 1930 by golf great Charles “Chick” Evans Jr., who won the U.S. Open and the U.S. Amateur in the same year —1916 — a feat that’s only been repeated once.

With increasing success, Mr. Evans was being pressured to go pro, according to the foundation’s website, but he “wasn’t interested in playing for money.” In order to preserve his amateur standing, he set up an escrow fund for all his winnings. In 1930, the first two scholarships were awarded to two caddies who went on to a full ride at Northwestern University.

As the nation’s largest scholarship fund for caddies, the foundation has sent more than 12,000 caddies to leading colleges and universities throughout the country, including the University of Notre Dame, the University of Michigan and Penn State.