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Posted April 07, 2019 04:04 pm
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Florida teen Andrew McLauchlan enjoys first Augusta National experience

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    Andrew McLauchlan lines up his first putt attempt during the Drive, Chip and Putt National Finals at Augusta National Golf Club, Sunday, April 7, 2019, in Augusta, Georgia. [ANDY NELSON/FOR THE AUGUSTA CHRONICLE]

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    Photos description

    Andrew McLauchlan watches his first putt attempt during the Drive, Chip and Putt National Finals at Augusta National Golf Club, Sunday, April 7, 2019, in Augusta, Georgia. [ANDY NELSON/FOR THE AUGUSTA CHRONICLE]

Andrew McLauchlan soaked in the aura of playing Augusta National on Sunday during the Drive, Chip and Putt National Finals.

The 15-year-old finished in a tie for eighth in the Boys 14-15 category, compiling a total of 13 points. McLauchlan tallied six points in the driving and putting portion of the competition and scored one point in the chipping category.

“It was awesome,” McLauchlan said after getting off the 18th green. “Great experience. Didn’t play my best, but it was just awesome to be here.”

It was the first time visiting Augusta National for the Jacksonville native and his family. McLauchlan won the regional qualifier at TPC Sawgrass in Ponte Vedra Beach, Fla., to qualify but said being at Augusta had its own unique feeling.

McLauchlan enjoys playing golf with his brother Alex Frias. Frias, 24, said he began playing with him when he was only 3.

“I got into golf right at the age when he could start playing, so I’d take him out all the time and we’ve been playing golf together for 12 to 13 years now,” Frias said.

The Florida Junior Match Play champion’s favorite club is his putter. He left his first putt seven inches from the hole and the second putt just over four feet away. McLauchlan walks halfway between his putts to read the green.

“I usually try and go where it comes downhill and if something changes,” McLauchlan said. “I try and find within the last 10 feet of the hole and try and see what it does from there.”

Frias, a proud older brother, said he and McLauchlan will savor the special moment of playing at Augusta National.

“It’s incredible just being here and having him here doing this as brothers,” Frias said smiling. “We’ve dreamt of this day to come to Augusta for years, so being able to watch him play on these greens and hit these drives is incredible.”