Daulton Nelson signing

Northeast Lauderdale 2021 graduate Daulton Nelson, center front, signs with East Central Community College to continue his golf career during a signing ceremony Thursday, June 17, 2021, in the Northeast Lauderdale gymnasium. Pictured with him are his parents, seated, Angie and Steve Nelson, and Northeast Lauderdale athletic director Lewis Lightsey.

Playing golf at East Central Community College is a family tradition for the Nelsons.

Northeast Lauderdale 2021 graduate Daulton Nelson will be the next in line to carry on the tradition after his father, Steve Nelson, and uncle Joel Nelson did the same during their days as students at ECCC. Thursday afternoon, Daulton Nelson signed with the Warriors, and he said he was excited to be the next Nelson to play golf in Decatur.

“Not very many people get to follow in their dad and uncle’s footsteps, so being able to play at the same place they played is pretty sweet,” Daulton Nelson said. 

Steve Nelson said he’s looking forward to seeing his son’s golf game improve under the ECCC coaching staff.

“I’m very excited about it because growing up I always thought he never took the game as seriously as he could have, but there was always some talent there,” Steve Nelson said. “Actually, Coach Chris Clark, who is the golf coach at East Central now, his dad was my golf coach at East Central back in the mid-’80s. It’ll be a really good experience for him, and I hope he enjoys it as much as I did.”

Now that the recruitment process is over, Daulton Nelson said he’s grateful that he can practice without wondering where he’ll be playing next year.

“I was kind of nervous at first, but now that I have it behind me I’m really looking forward to what the future holds,” Daulton Nelson said. “I like to go out there and relax and have fun. I’ve always played golf ever since I was little, so being able to do that every day is a blessing to me.”

Since Daulton Nelson played multiple sports in high school, he wasn’t able to spend as much time on golf as he otherwise would have, Steve Nelson said. Thankfully, there’s plenty of talent with which the coaches at ECCC can work.

“We’re going to spend time on a few more things during the summer, but he strikes the ball fairly well, and it’s usually fairly straight with maybe a little draw here or there,” Steve Nelson said. “Thank goodness he didn’t get my touch of chipping around the greens — he usually does a good job with that.”

Focusing on one sport should help with his son’s development as well, Steve Nelson added.

“During high school he played football and basketball and baseball and never really concentrated (on golf),” Steve Nelson said. “Now that he’s concentrating on one sport, I look for him to do very well.”

Having an opportunity to continue his golf career is something Daulton Nelson said he doesn’t take lightly.

“Being able to play a college sport has always been a dream of mine,” Daulton Nelson said. “Now that it’s finally come true, it’s just a blessing.”

As the father of a student-athlete, Steve Nelson said he couldn’t be prouder of his son for earning this opportunity.

“Anything a kid can do and prolong their career throughout college is just a wonderful feeling,” Steve Nelson said. “Just to know they’re getting to go and do something that they enjoy is great, and you never know what this might lead to down the road. If good things happen, someone else might look at him on the four-year level, and if not, that’s OK, too, because you had two years of great fun at East Central.”

Daulton Nelson is also the son of Angie Nelson.

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