When he was but a scrawny little 5-foot-10, 115-pound freshman, it didn’t take Joey Robichaux long to figure out that he was too small for high school football. And, although he was pretty good at soccer, it wasn’t really his thing at high school.
Then one day Destrehan golf coach Brad Landeche put out a somewhat desperate call for golfers – or, just bodies actually. Robichaux heard that call and answered.
“Me and my friend Braden Naquin had been to the driving range a few times,” Robichaux recalled. “So we said, ‘Oh we’ve been to the driving range. We can play golf.’ It was worth a shot.”
According to Landeche, they really couldn’t play golf – not very well, at least. But, with only one golfer on the team at the time, he couldn’t really be too picky. So, he took Robichaux and Naquin in. Then along came Adam Clavelle, Triston Winterine and Tate Roussel – all of Norco. Now, four years later, Landeche has the makings of what could be a pretty successful golf team and Robichaux appears to have a bright future in golf. He has shot par at his home course of Cypress Lakes in Destrehan and, last month, the senior received his first college scholarship offer from Millsaps College, an offer valued at approximately $50,000.
“It was exciting,” said Robichaux, who is the son of Jay and Denise Robichaux of Norco. “I definitely wasn’t expecting that.”
Landeche wasn’t expecting it either.
“It’s the first offer I’ve ever seen in my seven years,” Landeche said. “He definitely deserves it. He has a great work ethic. He really works hard to get better. He’s definitely improved and come a long way in four years. He’s our leader, the one we expect big things out of.”
But other than a few fun trips to the local driving range, Robichaux had never played golf before his freshman year. Actually, none of Destrehan’s current golfers had.
“They came in with makeshift clubs, mismatched sets, clubs from uncles,” Landeche said. “But once they hit the ball that first time, they were addicted.”
And now the Wildcats are a district and state contender. The team opened district play on Monday at Ellendale Country Club in Houma. Although it was, according to Landeche, a “terrible” day in cold and windy conditions, the Wildcats took the win, edging Hahnville 190-189. Leading the Wildcats was Clavelle, who shot a 45, followed by Naquin, who shot a 46.
For Robichaux, like many golfers, even a bad day of golf can be a good day – especially when he’s surrounded by his pals.“Even when it’s tough, it’s fun,” he said. “We just play as a team. I see it as five brothers hanging out and having fun.”
By Lori LyonsContributing writer