Bringing Back the Hammer
Kinkaid boys golf set up for three straight SPC titles
Kinkaid boys golf has won five of the last six SPC championships, but had to complete the 2017 run without Texas-signee Cole Hammer.
Hammer played his first two high school seasons with the team, but elected to go the homeschool route as a junior to recover from a lingering elbow injury.
Luckily for both parties, Hammer’s back to his dominant self, and Kinkaid’s chances of going back-to-back-to-back as SPC Champions are better than ever.
“It was a pretty easy decision to rejoin the Kinkaid golf team,” Hammer said. “We had so much success in the past that it was really important to me to go back and finish my senior year strong.”
Another reason Hammer couldn’t wait to get back was the bond he’d developed with his teammates. That’s most noticeable with juniors Will Jacobe and Mason Nome, as well as senior Johnny Butler, because he’s played with them longer than he can remember.
Hammer kept in touch with them during his time away from the team, so they were some of the first people to know about his return.
“He had started talking to me early,” Jacobe said. “He was like, ‘There’s a 50/50 chance I come back to Kinkaid.’ And right when he told me that, I was like, ‘You need to come [back]’. I tried to tell him that every day.”
“He made his decision early in the summer, and I was really excited because I love playing with him,” Jacobe added.
Kinkaid coach Bobby Eggleston had to reshuffle his lineup when Hammer told him about the return, but it was a good challenge to have.
Eggleston ultimately gave the 2016 SPC individual champ the top spot, and featured a strong two and three in Nome and Jacobe, who finished second and fourth in 2017.
“We were disappointed when he decided to take a year off, but very excited when he decided to come back,” said Eggleston. “He brings so much to our team, score-wise, but also how he handles himself on and off the course.”
Even with the change, the Falcons retained a strong starting five. Butler, their No. 4, also had experience from last year’s SPC tournament and has already picked up a win in 2018.
“Ever since then, he’s had that feeling that he can go low,” Eggleston said. “He’s been with our team for four years, and he’s really solidified the bottom part of the lineup.”
There’s also an up-and-comer in sophomore Bain Williams, so the group will be hard to beat at this spring’s final.
“This is definitely our strongest team so far,” said Jacobe. “I’m very confident that we will win the tournament if we play the golf that we should.”
This article appears in the April issue of VYPE Magazine. Pick up your copy at any one of our locations today!