LAS CRUCES, New Mexico (KTSM) – Aidan Thomas is one of New Mexico State’s best players on the course.
Thomas, a senior, has an extensive golf resume already, as he is a two-time All-WAC First Team selection (2021, 2022), two-time NCAA Regional qualifier (2021-team, 2022-individual), All-WAC Freshman of the Year (2021); and outside of NMSU, he’s the most recent winner of the New Mexico-West Texas Amateur Championship (2022).
Even with many more accomplishments under his name, Thomas is looking to add more.
On Wednesday, July 13, Thomas will play at the New Mexico State Golf Course in a qualifying event for the 2022 U.S. Amateur that will be held August 15-21 at the Ridgewood Country Club in Paramus, New Jersey.
“It is the most prestigious tournament you can play in as an amateur. Everyone wants to play in it and if you can qualify, you’re fortunate,” said Thomas. “My goal for this year is to try to qualify and then make match play.”
Now, Thomas is another great spot to capture to take advantage of a huge opportunity in his career so far, but it wouldn’t have been possible without some moves early on in his life.
When Thomas was about 12-years-old, he and his family moved out of their hometown of Pueblo of Laguna, a reservation that is about 45 miles west of Albuquerque, New Mexico, to Bernalillo, New Mexico to seize more opportunity in the sport.
“We moved there [Bernalillo] because we had to play more junior tournaments and that was the only way I could,” said Thomas. “It would be a hard commute for me to play in junior tournaments in Albuquerque if I was living in Laguna.”
Not only did the move help Thomas develop his game, but his older brother, Tyrone, and uncle, Ronald Sarracino, also contributed throughout Aidan’s life to help him grow as a golfer.
“It all started with my uncle and brother, I have an older brother that is four years older than me, and without him I wouldn’t have been able to golf at all,” said Thomas. “My uncle and brother got me into junior camps and I spent a lot of time working at it, just having fun first couple of years and then I was like “Oh, I am really good at this game” so I took it serious from age 12 and on.”
Thomas now hopes to continue to find success in the game that the two members of his family introduced him to.
“I would say my uncle started me off and my brother led me on,” said Thomas. “We would have competitions from when I was 8 to 12 years old and it was fun and a test. We’d get made at each other a lot and sometimes it wouldn’t end well but I think it pushed me to become a college golfer and hopefully I can do more with that, become a professional golfer and play in the PGA Tour one day.”