Stephenville resident and Lingleville Junior High student Colt Jeffress, 12, continues to rise among the ranks of junior golfers.

Jeffress has started the new season with a bang, finishing fourth in a prestigious junior invitational at Barton Creek Lakeside Country Club in Austin followed by a third-place finish in an All-American Tour event sponsored by the North Texas PGA at Sherrill Park Golf Course in Richardson.

"He's working hard and he's playing really well right now," said Wes Jeffress, Colt's father. "Getting into junior high sports (at Lingleville) has made him stronger and he's hitting the ball farther. Chipping and putting have always been his biggest strengths, and now he's not as far behind off the tee as he used to be."

The newfound length - and his seemingly always reliable short game - helped Jeffress shoot rounds of 77 and 80 at Barton Creek and rounds of 81 and 77 at Sherrill Park.

Those performances earned young Jeffress an invitation to a Junior Masters event in Atlanta the first week of Georgia.

"I'm not sure if we're going to be able to go or not," said Wes Jeffress. "We would love for him to play there with it being such a big event and with the Masters being the next week (in nearby Augusta, GA.)."

Before making a decision concerning the Junior Masters, Colt will compete this weekend in the Azalea Trail Junior Golf Classic at Hollytree Country Club in Tyler. He has already made plans to again compete in the Starburst Tournament at Cottonwood Creek Golf Course in Waco.

"That's a big national tournament and Colt has a real shot in it," said Wes. "He's playing real well right now."

Wes says the older Colt gets, the more he gets invited to tough golf courses.

"The courses he's getting invited to and the competition he's playing against just keeps getting tougher," Wes said. "But Colt just keeps getting better, too."