ROCKFORD (WREX) — Boylan senior golfer T.J. Baker is our WREX Athlete of the Week. Baker won a 2-A individual state championship this past weekend, thanks in part to a hole-in-one in his final round.
“Straight into the wind, 210 yards,” Baker says as he explains his ace. “I didn’t know what to hit. I grabbed my four-iron, ripped it and thought I hit it way over the green, honestly. It just dropped and I didn’t see the ball anymore. Everyone was cheering so I kind of figured it went in.”
Baker rode that momentum all the way to a 1st place finish at state, becoming Boylan’s first individual state champ since Danny Gorman.
“I’m really good friends with Danny,” Baker said. “He’s been my mentor for awhile now. I’m going to SIU-E where he went, so it’s cool to follow in his footsteps.”
The outgoing champ has a message for his younger teammates as he prepares for the next level.
“I practiced probably 200 rounds of golf this summer and last summer,” Baker said. “Just keep up the hard work and you’ll get there.”
Baker won a state title in his first trip to state, cementing his legacy as the next talented young golfer to come out of Boylan.