Thursday, Rex Bryant III put the finishing touches on a final-round 79 in the AJGA’s David Toms Junior at Southern Trace Country Club. Byrd’s rising senior finished in 50th place.

Nothing about the performance seems extraordinary.

How about the number 8? That’s how many birdies Bryant made during the 54-hole event.

Still nothing?

Well, consider this. The lives of people, like Bryant’s aunt, Stephanie Bryant, afflicted with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS, Lou Gehrig’s Disease), could hinge on any and every hole he plays on the AJGA Tour.

Under the Birdies for Charity program on the nation’s top circuit for junior golfers, Bryant earns donations toward the ALS Association.

“In February, (Stephanie) was diagnosed with ALS,” said Bryant, who began campaign with the help of his mother. “It had a pretty big impact on our family. We immediately began to try to find ways to support her and help her out.”

Donors can pledge an amount to pay per Bryant birdie or they can make a one-time donation.

A member of Byrd’s three-time reigning state champion golf team, Bryant made four birdies in his opening round Tuesday, and two birdies Wednesday helped take the sting out of an 86.

Stephanie Bryant was certainly proud of that 86.

Sometimes it takes a little digging to unearth the most important numbers.

Click here to read the rest of The Times article.