Owensboro’s Warren places second at KY State Amateur Golf Championship

June 15, 2024 | 12:11 am

Updated June 15, 2024 | 12:09 am

Owensboro’s Stephen Warren placed second this week in the Kentucky Amateur Championship at Traditions Golf Club in Hebron. Warren is entering his senior year at Western Kentucky University, where he plays for the golf team. 

Warren’s family, a true golfing clan, was also involved in this significant event. His brother Hayden — also a key Hilltoppers golf team member – competed at the event, while his younger brother Nolan served as his caddie.

“This is a step in the right direction. The KY AM is a tournament that I always look forward to,” Warren said. “Everyone I grew up playing with is always up there, along with Andy Roberts, who taught me a lot about the game. It’s tough to beat spending time with my brothers and playing in tournaments.”

With the finish, Warren earns an exemption through the first stage of qualifying for next year’s U.S. AM at Olympia Fields Country Club in Chicago. Until then, he and Hayden have their sights set on qualifying for this year’s event at the iconic Hazeltine National Golf Club in Chaska, Minnesota. 

To qualify, they must be among the state’s top 50 amateur golfers. They will begin that trek at TPC Riverbend in Cincinnati in early July. The two brothers spend most of their days practicing at The Club at Olde Stone, home to Hilltopper golf. 

“WKU has been great. We have a new coach this year (Austin King), and he has been a breath of fresh air,” Warren said. “He supports each and every one of us and what we want to get out of our game. We won our first tournament in 7 years, and we’re definitely trending in the right direction.”

Warren added that he had some top finishes as an individual and looks forward to a promising senior season. 

He fired off a first-round 74 last week before bouncing back with a 68 and closing with a 70 for a net -4 and second place. 

“There were some difficult hole locations,” he said of the challenging course. “I played a good round on Tuesday but just couldn’t score. I knew I was doing the right things, so I was at peace with that and just let it happen the next few days.”

As he approaches the home stretch of his collegiate career, he’s committed to his golf game, but not without a backup plan. 

“We will see what God has in store – I know he’s in charge, and that is with any sport,” he said. “God has a game plan, and I just want to go out and execute it. I also have a biology degree, so I’m not ruling out medical school.”

Whatever route he chooses, he’s always grateful for the hometown support. 

“Owensboro is great,” Warren said. “I always receive several texts and calls congratulating me after a round or rooting me on. This is a special community, and it’s always fun to come home and see everyone.”

June 15, 2024 | 12:11 am

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