Hardy, Kil earn titles at Mistwood
It’s still early, but Glenbrook North sophomore Nick Hardy and Buffalo Grove junior Grace Kil haven’t wasted any time getting warmed up for the summer golf season.
Hardy won his second major tournament of the summer with an even-par 72 Thursday to win the Mid-American Junior Golf Tour’s 54-hole Mistwood Invitational in Romeoville. Hardy (76-70-72--218) beat recent St. Viator graduate Kenny Wienckowski of Schaumburg by three strokes for the boys championship.
Hardy won the MAJGT’s Prairie State Preview at the Den at Fox Creek in Bloomington on May 22.
Kil, an Arlington Heights resident, was one of three golfers to shoot a 75 Thursday and won the girls title by one stroke over Bing Singhsumlee. Kil started the third round five shots behind Singhsumlee, but the incoming freshman from Naperville scored an 81 in her final round to finish second overall.
Kil had the shot of the day when she eagled the par-5, 429-yard 15th with a chip-in from 10 yards out.
“It was amazing. I tried to hit my hybrid hoping I would hit the green,” said Kil, who finished seventh in the Class AA state meet in October. “I hit it over the green. I was kind of grumpy about it. I was excited that I hit the hole on the chip.”
After the eagle, Kil double bogeyed the par-4 16th. She did not have a birdie and bogeyed three holes on the front nine.
“All I did was try my best,” Kil said. “I try to get all pars and try to maintain my game and hope for the best for me.”
Hardy’s par-72 was the lowest score of Thursday’s round, topping Wienckowski by a stroke. Hardy and Barrington junior Greg Conrad started the day tied for first, but Conrad carded a 79 to drop to fourth place with a 225 total.
“I didn’t get myself opportunities to make birdies,” Conrad said. “I was happy with the way I hit the ball. It was my first tournament of the summer.”
Conrad will take a week off before playing in the State Junior Amateur beginning June 28 at Makray Memorial Golf Club in Barrington.
Hardy will play in two separate qualifiers in the next few weeks for the USGA’s Junior Amateur and for the Illinois Open. He tied for 14th last fall in his first Class 3A state tournament.
He had a birdie on his second hole and bogeyed the seventh hole on Thursday. His back nine was more chaotic with birdies at Nos. 10 and 15 and bogeys at Nos. 13 and 17.
“I was excited. I want to keep getting better although I can’t wait for the high school season,” Hardy said. “[Wednesday] I thought was moving day [up the leaderboard]. I wanted to do as well as I could. I tried to go as low as I can get myself.”
Hardy played the Ray Hearn-designed Mistwood Golf Club for the first time. Mistwood hosts the Phil Kosin Illinois Women’s Open in August.