East Chapel Hill's Ben Griffin sets sights on 3rd 4A title - WSLS 10 NBC in Roanoke/Lynchburg Va

East Chapel Hill's Ben Griffin sets sights on 3rd 4A title

Posted: Updated:
East Chapel Hill High's Ben Griffin won his first N.C. High School Athletic Association 4A golf title as a freshman. East Chapel Hill High's Ben Griffin won his first N.C. High School Athletic Association 4A golf title as a freshman.
CHAPEL HILL, N.C. -

Ben Griffin's pure, classic swing began to take shape at an early age -- a very early age.

"I started when I was 11 months old," said Griffin, a two-time state champion.

Eleven month's old? How in the world did that come about?

"We just happened to be on vacation and the time was right," said his father, Cowan Griffin. "He was there and just grabbed it and started swinging away."

"He just put a golf club in my hand and I just swung it," the East Chapel Hill High senior said. "I didn't know what I was doing."

But, his father said, "He was a natural."

Just how natural became even more evident when Griffin shocked the Tar Heel state, winning a 4A title his freshman year. Suddenly he began to travel from tournament to tournament as his family started to rack up car miles by the thousands. 

Add in entry fees, meals and lodging, and the cost of Griffin's passion began to add up. But it's a price his parents never thought twice about.

"The game of golf and what it's going to do for him in a lifetime, I'm glad he's excited about it because it will pay off multi-fold," Cowan said.

Now, trophies with no room to be displayed remain boxed in his bedroom. And magazine covers plaster his walls while dreams of future conquest lie on the horizon.

"To win three and tie the record with another PGA Tour pro who's already out there would be cool, and hopefully I can pull it off this year," he said. Brendon Todd won three N.C. High School Athletic Association 4A golf title while at Cary's Green Hope High.

Ben heads into his senior year with plenty of momentum in his quest for the trifecta, especially after winning the prestigious Rolex tournament of champions this summer in Pennsylvania.

"That was probably my breakthrough moment," Ben said. "I know I've won a couple of state championships in my high school career; but really ... to do it at a national level is really cool."

And that victory was not lost on his father.

"Hey, he's pretty good," Cowan said.

Nearly 17 years after he first picked up a golf club, Ben can now look forward and think:

"Man, this game could take me really far."

Todd Gibson

Known as "Gibby" around the station, Todd excels at taking viewers beyond who won or who lost. He hosts "Friday Night Blitz," a showcase of varsity football action in our area. If you have a cool sports story, tell Gibby! More>>

  • UNC SportsMore>>

  • Tar Heels hope to improve tackling against Pirates

    Tar Heels hope to improve tackling against Pirates

    Monday, September 15 2014 4:30 PM EDT2014-09-15 20:30:57 GMT
    San Diego State's Ezell Ruffin (3) runs the ball against North Carolina during the second half of an NCAA college football game in Chapel Hill, N.C., Saturday, Sept. 6, 2014. North carolina won 31-27. (AP Photo/Gerry Broome)San Diego State's Ezell Ruffin (3) runs the ball against North Carolina during the second half of an NCAA college football game in Chapel Hill, N.C., Saturday, Sept. 6, 2014. North carolina won 31-27. (AP Photo/Gerry Broome)
    It's hard for North Carolina coach Larry Fedora to know exactly what kind of defense he has.
    It's hard for North Carolina coach Larry Fedora to know exactly what kind of defense he has.
  • Former walk-on Hollins making mark at WR for UNC

    Former walk-on Hollins making mark at WR for UNC

    Thursday, September 11 2014 6:58 PM EDT2014-09-11 22:58:23 GMT
    File PhotoFile Photo
    Mack Hollins has suddenly become a big-play receiving threat for North Carolina.
    Mack Hollins has suddenly become a big-play receiving threat for North Carolina.
  • No. 21 UNC holds on to beat San Diego State, 31-27

    No. 21 UNC holds on to beat San Diego State, 31-27

    Sunday, September 7 2014 7:19 AM EDT2014-09-07 11:19:42 GMT
    Make it two rallies in two weeks for No. 21 North Carolina, which erased a two-touchdown deficit in the second half and then held on to beat San Diego State 31-27 on Saturday night after Tim Scott's interception in the end zone with 14 seconds left.
    Make it two rallies in two weeks for No. 21 North Carolina, which erased a two-touchdown deficit in the second half and then held on to beat San Diego State 31-27 on Saturday night after Tim Scott's interception in the end zone with 14 seconds left.
  • Trending StoriesMore>>

  • Letter found with body of App State student, police say

    Letter found with body of App State student, police say

    Monday, September 15 2014 5:16 PM EDT2014-09-15 21:16:12 GMT
    The body of Anna Smith was discovered in a heavily wooded area in Boone.The body of Anna Smith was discovered in a heavily wooded area in Boone.
    The Boone Police Department said a letter was discovered with the body of an Appalachian State University student, indicating her death may have been a suicide.
    The Boone Police Department said a letter was discovered with the body of an Appalachian State University student, indicating her death may have been a suicide.
  • 'Party mansion' owner convicted of tax and healthcare fraud

    'Party mansion' owner convicted of tax and healthcare fraud

    Friday, September 12 2014 12:38 PM EDT2014-09-12 16:38:35 GMT
    File photoFile photo
    A former Raleigh resident, known for the wild parties held at his “party mansion” in North Raleigh, was sentenced to more than 10 years in prison for tax fraud, healthcare fraud and money laundering crimes, according to a United States Department of Justice release.
    A former Raleigh resident, known for the wild parties held at his “party mansion” in North Raleigh, was sentenced to more than 10 years in prison for tax fraud, healthcare fraud and money laundering crimes, according to a United States Department of Justice release.
  • Urban Outfitters faces backlash for controversial sweatshirt

    Urban Outfitters faces backlash for controversial sweatshirt

    Monday, September 15 2014 12:43 PM EDT2014-09-15 16:43:43 GMT
    The website of clothing outlet Urban Outfitters featured a controversial, one-of-a-kind shirt briefly Monday morning before it sold, but not before causing a stir on the Internet.
    The website of clothing outlet Urban Outfitters featured a controversial, one-of-a-kind shirt briefly Monday morning before it sold, but not before causing a stir on the Internet.
Powered by WorldNow

WSLS 10, P.O. Box 10
Roanoke, VA 24022-0010

Telephone: 540.981.9110
Fax: 540.343.3157
Email: news@wsls.com

Can't find something?
Powered by WorldNow
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Media General Communications Holdings, LLC. A Media General Company.