In order to share his golf time with his baby girl and give his wife a breather, Brian would take Laurie Beth with him. He pushed his daughter’s stroller and carried his clubs around the course.
Fourteen years later, Laurie Beth is still rounding golf courses with her dad. They ride together in a cart, and she carries her own clubs.
The father-daughter tandem is playing together in a tournament for the first time this weekend as partners in the Sunny King Charity Classic.
“It’s been all right,” Brian said Saturday, after he and Laurie Beth completed their second round as a tandem in the best-ball scramble. “We don’t hate each other yet. How about that?”
The two stand at 11-over par 153 after shooting a 75 at Anniston Country Club on Saturday.
Brian grew up in Kennesaw, Ga. He graduated from Alabama and works as an electrical engineer for North American Bus Industries, Inc. in Anniston.
He has played golf since he was 10, a span of about 30 years, and is playing in his fourth Sunny King. He played the other three with different partners.
Laurie Beth, who is about to start high school at Sacred Heart, loves sports. She plays basketball, volleyball and soccer and is considering softball.
She also wants to play golf, likely as a single since Sacred Heart doesn’t have a golf team.
The family moved here 10 years ago, after living for a time in New Mexico, where Laurie Beth was born. She now has three sisters, ranging in age from 6-12.
“They’ve all been out there, as babies, being pushed on the stroller while I played at one point or another,” Brian said.
Brian pushed Laurie Beth’s stroller around a 9-hole course in New Mexico about three times a week.
“It was great, because I wanted to play golf,” Brian said. “It was an opportunity for me to go play, for my child to be outside and for my wife to have an hour without having to take care of somebody. It kind of worked out for everybody.
“I was a lot younger, too, so that made it easier. The course was flat, so that made it pretty nice.”
Laurie Beth wasn’t old enough to remember and said there are no pictures, but she’s heard the stories about those stroller days. Even after she grew out of the stroller, she still went out on the course with her dad.
“We have the little plastic clubs at home,” she said. “There were a few times, when I was a bit older, around 10 or so, and I had some kids clubs.
“It was nice just to get to go out there and play.”
Laurie Beth said her dad has never pushed golf on her, but she began to show more interest in learning the game two or three years ago.
It helps that they live near a course. Their home is near the Indian Oaks driving range, and they have most of their outings on that course.
“It’s nice to have something that we can do together, that we can talk about and he can help me with,” Laurie Beth said. “He’s kind of like a personal home tutor for school and things, but it’s nice to have something we can go … .”
After a pause, she laughs.
“It’s nice to get your aggression out,” she said. “I think we both get plenty of that on the golf course.”
Laurie Beth said her dad gives her pointers on the course, and she credits him for keeping her on the right fairway most of the time. Sometimes, though, she feels the urge to say, “I’ve got this one, dad.”
“Maybe once or twice, after the end of a long day and I’m really tired,” she said.
The Beyerles wound up Sunny King partners because Brian’s partner had a change in plans. They played Saturday in a foursome with another father-daughter team, Roger and Taylor Fair.
Brian says Laurie Beth’s game is “a work in progress,” and he sees the Sunny King as a learning experience for her.
“It’s been great for her. She’s played great,” Brian said. “She’s done as much as I ever could have asked.
“I’m not happy with my play, but when you don’t play a lot any more, you’re not consistent. I‘ve been very happy with her and very proud of the way she‘s played.”
The Sunny King is a best-ball scramble, and Laurie Beth takes delight when the two play her ball. So does her dad.
“It’s nice to use her score,” Brian said. “It’s saved us a couple of times, for sure.”
Joe Medley is The Star’s sports columnist. He can be reached at 256-235-3576 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow on Twitter @Jomedstar.