Meet the new assistant golf pro at SDGC

Terry RogersHeadlines, Milford Headline Story, Sports

Caden Stanley, the new assistant golf pro at SDGC

by David McCallum


Caden Stanley’s journey to being the new assistant golf professional at Southern Delaware Golf Club has been a circuitous one – much like a baseball player rounding the bases before sliding back into home safely.

Fortunately, it’s a journey Stanley likely navigated numerous times as a second baseman and four-year letterman at Milford High School, where in his senior season in 2019 culminated with the Buccaneers posting a 16-2 regular season record before falling to Cape Henlopen 3-2 in the DIAA tournament.

After graduating from Milford, Stanley’s next stop was Delaware Tech Community College where his golf journey really began to take shape. Following three months of playing baseball, he decided to throw his lot in with golf.

“That’s when I fell in love with golf and I said, ‘I think I’ve had my time with baseball and I’m going to switch over to golf now. I’m the type of person who likes competition. It’s always been a thing with me. This is going to sound kind of selfish, but I kind of wanted something that every success was on me, every failure was on me, and I think golf has a better way of testing you all around. And when it’s on you, you can play for yourself. When you do something good, it’s all on you; but, when you do something bad, it’s all on you, too. I just like that challenge more than a team sport [offers you].”

Although he’s not playing baseball anymore, Stanley says playing his childhood sport has helped him with the game that he now loves.

“Yes, just having a natural development of a swing, the torque in the body that it takes, there’s a lot of changes that come with that (with a golf swing) you have to adjust to,” he said. “You know over time, I have adjusted,” he said with a smile, “I bet if I went out and tried to hit a baseball, I wouldn’t be anywhere near able to do it the way I used to do it.

“Also, one thing I’ve also done with any sport I’ve played is honestly overanalyze everything about it. I think over the years of playing baseball, I didn’t master it obviously, but I felt like the knowledge aspect of the game that I had gotten pretty much everything in my brain, and I wanted to start fresh with something new.”

Stanley says the fact he didn’t know too much about golf at the time helped him in that he was able to teach himself the ways around the game.

Stanley on the green at SDGC

He says there have also been a lot of people around the golf industry that have helped him grow his game. Stanley counts his dad, Jon, who played golf at Seaford High School and Milford High friends Kyle and Josh Strassle, members of the MHS golf team at the time among those.

“Those two [the Strassles] were the first real golfers that I played with,” Caden said. “They’ve definitely given me some tips that I hadn’t considered that have helped me improve my game.”

At the time Stanley was falling for golf, SDGC’s previous incarnation—Rookery North—was still open, but when it closed in 2020, he had to go in search of a new golf home and he found it at Mulligan’s Pointe in Georgetown where he became a member and it was there he “pretty much played every day,” he said.

One day, the pro there (Mulligan’s) approached Stanley and asked him if he wanted a job and Stanley accepted.

“I started working as a cart boy and gradually worked my way up the ladder until I was working in the pro shop. And then approximately 1-1/2 years ago, I was offered the assistant pro job.”

How he landed back in his hometown at the newly named SDGC was something Stanley called a ‘thing of luck’ because he caught it at the right time. “I have a couple of buddies that work out here and they kept telling me to come over and see if I could get a job here, and I did and now I’m here.”

As for Southern Delaware’s Director of Golf and head pro Stewart Fisher, he is excited to have Stanley onboard.

“The main thing that I see is that he loves the game, and he cares about golf. He cares about this area, he grew up in Milford,” Fisher said. “He’s happy to see this course restored to its former glory if you will. He cares about this property, this town. He reminds me a lot of myself. I didn’t start golfing until college like Caden and I fell in love with the game and just wanted to be around it and he wants to learn, so that’s what I’m excited about Caden is his love for the game and his desire to learn more and better himself as a golf professional.”

The fact that Stanley is from Milford and played the old Rookery North course is a golf gold mine of information for Fisher who never had the opportunity to play the course in its previous incarnation.

“It’s tremendous that Caden has the local knowledge,” Fisher said. “He knows a lot of people in the area, folks that were members here when it was Shawnee or even when it was Rookery North, so he’s going to be able to relate with them. And as far as the course, it is going to help with how it looked like then and how it is going to look like in the future and filling me in with the benefits of knowing those things is big.”

As far as Stanley’s role as the assistant pro, Fisher sees him as just another version of himself.

“He’s going to have the ability to teach, to help organize and execute tournaments. He’s helping already with the membership, the inventory, the merchandising side of things,” Fisher said. “He’s young, eager to learn, is kind of helping me be a better pro, but I can help him be a better pro just by teaching him how the ins and outs of the golf operation runs.”

In golf course news, memberships for both individuals and families are sold out with a total of 226. There is a waiting list for single or family memberships, and interested people can call the pro shop at 302-.491-7933 or send an email to [email protected] to get on the wait list. The course opens to members and the general public on May 1.

Members will be able to book tee times 30 days in advance, while the general public can do so 28 days in advance by calling the pro shop at 302-491-7933 now or using the course’s website,, once it goes live which is tentatively set for Tuesday (April 16). Golfers will also soon be able to book times on the course’s app, which can be found in their favorite app stores by looking for Southern Delaware GC. Fisher noted golfers will not be able to book tee times on the popular Golf Now app.

In addition, netting for the driving range continues to being installed. Inside the pro shop, merchandise which includes clubs, golf gloves, hats and apparel continues to arrive daily, he said.





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