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Tuesday, Sep. 30, 2014

Hoggatt wins Player of the Year

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

(Photo)
Kirk Hoggatt
SIKESTON -- While many high school students spent this past summer enjoying some downtime, Sikeston senior Kirk Hoggatt spent his on the golf course fine tuning his game.

All that hard work paid off for Hoggatt earlier this month when he won the Southern Illinois Golf Association Player of Year award in the 16-to-18 year-old division.

"It's great to have that for all my hard work that I've put in," Hoggatt said. "Because it wasn't just one tournament, it was being the Player of the Year for the whole season.

"It was working hard all summer and it's great to able to look back and be like, 'I worked hard enough and it paid off.'"

A member of the Sikeston high school squad that finished seventh in state this past spring, Hoggatt came into the final tournament of the summer holding the points lead and needing only one more good round to capture the title.

In that final tournament, the Vogle Ford-Lincoln-Mazda Player's Championship, Hoggatt capped his summer season with a round of 78 to take fifth on the day and remain at the top of the overall standings with 168.5 points.

Hoggatt's finished the season with a comfortable 27.5-point edge over Trevor Floto, who took second in the age group with 141 points.

Played at Franklin County Country Club in West Frankfort, Ill. on Monday, Aug. 6, the Player's Championship was limited to the top 20 players from the 16-to-18 year old division.

While his day had a bit of a rough start, finishing four over par on the first nine, Hoggatt said a good break on the 10th hole turned things around.

"I was just trying too hard and finally laid back and played gold like I usually play," Hoggatt said. "We were on the 10th hole and I hit it into some really tall weeds. I got fortunate coming out of the weeds to get a good lie.

"I took a swing at it, put it one the green and made the putt for birdie. That was probably the turning point in my round. It just got me going."

A four-under on the final nine holes left Hoggatt shooting a 78 to end the day six shots off the lead, but easily a strong enough finish to stay atop the leader board.

With the summer season now over, Hoggatt said he'll continue to hit the links with hopes of helping the Bulldogs better on last year's finish this coming spring.

"I practice pretty much all year round," Hoggatt said. "I play in some tournaments, but pretty much until the high school season I won't get to play in many tournaments.

"I'm just trying to start get working toward the season because we got seventh in state last year and I'd like to improve on that as a team."