USGA WOMEN'S STATE TEAM
A Sister of Two Pros, Bryan Committed to the Amateur Game September 26, 2017 | SANTA FE, N.M. By David Chmiel, USGA

Although her family life revolves around professional golf, Mary Chandler Bryan, of South Carolina, plans to remain an amateur. (USGA/Steven Gibbons)

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Mary Chandler Bryan just wants to keep the good vibes going for her home state.

Bryan grew up in Chapin, S.C., and became a standout on the College of Charleston’s women’s golf team. She is grouped with Lea Venable and Dawn Woodard during this week’s USGA Women’s State Team Championship at The Club at Las Campanas and is excited about the team’s chances.

“This summer is the first time that I played with them and we had fun,” she said. “It’s a different feeling to play an individual sport and then work together as a team. They are a good group and we mesh well, so I am looking forward to it.”

The 23-year-old Bryan is especially motivated to make waves back home to keep up with her older brother, PGA Tour golfer Wesley Bryan, who got the Palmetto State faithful fired up by winning the RBC Heritage in Hilton Head Island in April.

“That was one of the best moments for the whole family,” she said. “Here we were watching Wesley on Easter Sunday, in our home state. He had the biggest following and it was overwhelming to see people we knew and so many we didn’t just rooting for their hometown guy. I just knew he was going to show everyone just how good he is. It was surreal. It was just the start for him.”

Wesley was back in the news recently, playing his final round of the BMW Championship as a single in a crisp 89 minutes.

Chapin also helped Wesley and their brother, George, become viral stars with their Bryan Bros Golf YouTube channel, which has more than 30,000 subscribers. She was pressed into service as the videographer who captured their amazing shots.

“They don’t need me much anymore. They used me at nighttime when nobody else was around,” she said. “I just grew up with them doing it, so I am not super surprised by anything that they do … I have a couple of my own on Instagram, too. I am just glad that people are starting to see what great players they are (Wesley finished 41st in the FedEx Cup standings and George is playing on the PGA Tour Latinoamerica).”

Bryan, playing in her third USGA championship, says she is committed to remaining an amateur golfer, for one very important reason. She is getting married to William Rainey, who also played for the College of Charleston, in early 2018 and she wants to support him as he prepares for PGA Tour Qualifying School.

“I am living at home with my parents and working for my father [George Bryan III, who owns the George Bryan Golf Academy in Chapin] to make money before the wedding,” she said. “Then I will be moving to Charlotte, get a temporary job and be the best supportive wife I can be. I just don’t think that it would work if we were both playing professionally. I am excited, actually, to play amateur golf. I am looking forward to playing in more USGA championships.”

Bryan expects some exciting scoring opportunities at Las Campanas.

“I have played some golf in Arizona, but I never played at this altitude (7,000 feet above sea level) before. This course is so beautiful,” she said. “The greens are awesome. All you have to do is just get them started on the right track and they will go in. I think there can be some low scores this week.”

Bryan said she and her teammates have a simple strategy.

“I think we’re just going to go out and make as many low numbers as we can and see how that will work out,” she said, laughing. “It is kind of cool to know that we’ve got a lot of people back home rooting for us.”

She might have a few tricks up her sleeve to keep the cheers coming.

David Chmiel is the manager of member content for the USGA. Email him at dchmiel@usga.org

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