Originally aired on WRAL-TV – September 18, 2019
GOLDSBORO, N.C. — Pikeville native Ella Hannant is a self-described “farm kid.” The 10-year-old spends countless hours a day perfecting her game at Lane Tree Golf Club in Goldsboro.
“Ella started hitting balls when she was about 2,” said Regan Hannant, Ella’s mom. “By the time she was 5, it was very evident that she had a special gift.”
There’s a strong chance you might hear Ella’s name on the LPGA tour one day.
“I love being outside and getting to go to the amazing places we get to go to, and I love winning,” Ella Hannant said.
Many of the fellow golfers at the Lane Tree Golf Club ask where she’s heading each weekend because Ella has seen some of the best golf courses in the world.
“When I started winning a lot of tournaments and realizing that I really loved it and I started watching it and stuff, I realized this might be my game,” she said.
The 10-year-old won the US Kids World Golf Championship in August. She also won the Drive, Chip and Putt championship played at Augusta National. Yes, the same place where Tiger Woods and company play in The Masters.
The best part? She trains with her younger sister, Zada, 7.
“It feels good [to train with her], and it makes me want to get better,” Zada Hannant said with a laugh.
Sometimes they even run into their older sister, Karson, at the Lane Tree course.
“My middle name is actually named after Jack Nicklaus. My name is Steve Nicklaus Hannant so, it definitely didn’t work out for me, but now I caddy, and it’s worked out for the girls. It worked out just fine,” said their father, Dr. Steve Hannant.
Ella and Zada both go to North Carolina Virtual Academy so they can create a flexible school schedule. While all three are hoping to qualify for the Drive, Chip and Putt Championship in Augusta next year, Ella is already looking ahead.
“Of course I want to be on the LPGA Tour, and my dream is to be one of the younger players to get on there, hopefully by the time I’m 15,” Ella Hannant said.
To learn more about North Carolina Virtual Academy, visit https://ncva.k12.com/