Craig wins first junior golf tournament
After making the Nevada 4A state golf tournament as a South Tahoe High freshman, Kenny Craig hasn’t approached the off-season by letting spiders spin webs through his clubs in the garage.
Instead, the 15-year-old Craig has been busy winning a junior golf tournament, long-drive contest and club event.
On Aug. 9, Craig was the overall champion for all divisions at the Northern Nevada Junior Golf Association tournament at Plumas Pines Country Club in Blairsden, Calif.
“I’ve been trying ever since I’ve been playing golf to win one tournament,” Craig said. “Finally, this time everything went right and I played well.”
On a course marked by narrow fairways and various water hazards, Craig fired a 5-over-par 77, including 1-over par for the final nine holes, to claim the title. He was the only player in the field to break 80.
“I’ve finally gotten consistent this summer,” said Craig, who has lowered his handicap from 4.4 to 1.7. “I’m just playing every day after work and anytime I can.”
The win qualified Craig for the NNJGA Tournament of Champions for 15- to 17-year-olds today at Dayton Valley Country Club. Only the winners of previous Nevada junior tournaments this summer are eligible for the Dayton event.
Craig hasn’t confined his tournament participation to Nevada. He advanced all the way to the quarterfinals in the Northern California Junior Golf Association/Northern California Professional Golf Association Championship recently at Diablo Grande Resort in Patterson, Calif. His early round scores qualified him for match play, where he opened with a 3-1 win over Zach Lerna.
In a quarterfinal match with Eric Cover, Craig was one hole down with one to go. However, he battled back to even the match, but lost the quarterfinal on the second playoff hole. Cover went on to make the finals before losing to Chris Scott.
Craig, who participates in Lake Tahoe Golf Course’s Junior Golf Program, recently stepped outside his junior division to team with International Discount Golf owner Mark Lucksinger to win the South Lake Tahoe Rotary Golf Tournament. Craig also won the tournament’s long-drive contest.
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