BOWLING GREEN — With the exception of a few holes midway through the front nine Saturday, Allan Lockwood put together another solid performance in the Leachman Buick-GMC-Cadillac/KHSAA Boys’ State Golf Championship.
The Central Hardin junior shot a 5-over 77 in the final round at Bowling Green Country Club to finish the tournament tied for 12th with a two-day 6-over 150.
“I didn’t start off that well. I got myself in a few spots on the front where I just really couldn’t get out,” Lockwood said. “I didn’t execute well when I was trying to get out of those spots and then I played consistent on the back and gave myself looks and was 1-under on the back.”
Lockwood, who shot a 1-over 73 to win the 5th Region Tournament at Heritage Hill Golf Club — his third straight region title — was even in the final round through three holes, but bogeyed the fourth hole and posted back-to-back double bogeys on the sixth and seventh holes. He also recorded a bogey on the eighth.
“He really did a great job. He got a little bit sideways for about three holes — six, seven and eight — but to kind of put yourself in a bad spot like that and then to come back on the back nine and shoot 1-under is just something not a lot of kids can do,” Central Hardin coach Paul Gray said.
“We watched a lot of kids out here get off to a good start and then fold up and that’s one of the things that’s special about Allan — he’s played so much golf that when he gets in those bad spots, he knows how to handle himself and react.”
At 6-over through eight holes, Lockwood rallied through his final 10 holes of the season. His only blemish came on No. 15 with a bogey, but birdies on the 14th and 18th allowed him to finish the back nine 1-under.
“Just consistency off tee and prep shots, giving myself looks at birdie,” Lockwood said about his success on the back nine.
He entered the day in contention to compete for the individual title. Lockwood was part of a six-way tie for fifth with Franklin-Simpson’s Chase Wilson, Lexington Christian Academy’s Jansen Preston, Trinity’s John Marshall Butler, Taylor County’s Luke Coyle and St. Xavier’s Drew Doyle at 1-over after the first round thanks to four birdies.
It’s an improvement from last year’s finish as well. Lockwood finished tied for 44th as a sophomore at the state tournament at 14-over after shooting an 11-over 83 during the final round.
“I’m just really proud of him, especially for his finish today,” Gray said. “He got himself in trouble last year in this round and it went bad, but today he did a great job just finishing the thing off.”
The third-straight region title and 12th-place finish is something Lockwood is hoping to build on his senior season next fall. He says he wants to continue to get stronger and work on his consistency to help his game and, in turn, his finish in the season-ending tournament.
“He expects it of himself. Whatever pressure some other thing would cause is not going to affect him,” Gray said. “It’s going to be whatever pressure he puts on himself to perform is all he’s going to feel.”
Marshall County’s Jay Nimmo claimed the individual title. The junior Mississippi State commit shot an even-par 72 Saturday to finish 3-under in the tournament, two strokes better than Trinity’s John Marshall Butler.
“Just string together 18 good holes of golf,” Nimmo said. “I felt like (I needed to) keep a big number off my scorecard and just grind and make pars like I said yesterday and I did that today and it was enough.”
Allen County-Scottsville’s Owen Stamper was third at even par, Wayne County’s Reese Sexton and St. Xavier’s Drew Doyle tied for fourth at 1-over, Taylor County’s Luke Coyle was sixth at 3-over and Bowling Green’s Collier Curd was seventh at 4-over. Franklin-Simpson’s Chase Wilson, St. Xavier’s Patrick Brooks, Lexington Christian Academy’s Andrew Marrs and Taylor County’s Hayes Mason tied for eighth at 5-over to round out the podium finishes.
Taylor County shot a 301 to finish first with a two-day total of 606, two strokes better than Trinity. Lexington Christian finished one stroke behind Trinity and Marshall County was fourth at 615.
“I just told the boys today — we were down eight — I said, ‘Just go out and have fun. Whatever happens, happens. We’ve had a great year,’ “ Taylor County coach Todd Polston said. “The boys came through. I couldn’t be more happy with how we played today.”