Open and shut case

Billy Tom Sargent, shown signing an autograph for a young fan during his career at Western Kentucky University, tied for fourth at last week’s Kentucky Open.

Two-time Kentucky Mr. Golf and NCAA championship qualifier Billy Tom Sargent, now a year into his professional golf career, led a talented pack of Scott County players at last week’s 101st Kentucky Open.

Sargent shot a three-day total of 8-under 208, earning a tie for fourth place in the annual state championship, held this time at Triple Crown Country Club in Union.

The Scott County High School and Western Kentucky University graduate weaved matching rounds of 70 before closing with a 68 in the rain-delayed final round.

Sargent sank par putts on the first six holes Thursday before the closing chapter was moved to Friday.

He made two quick birdies and an eagle after the resumption. Later, Sargent capped the rally with three birdies on the final four greens.

Sargent’s eagle on the 10th hole in the final round was one of only 18 in the tournament.

It wasn’t enough to prevent J.B. Williams of Danville from successfully defending the title. Williams is the first golfer to repeat as Kentucky Open since another well-known J.B. — Holmes, the perennial PGA contender.

Sargent was one of five players on the leader board with strong Scott County ties.

Justin Warman, who starred at SCHS and Campbellsville University, tied for eighth overall at 4-under 212. Warman bounced back from a opening-day 74 with red numbers of 68 and 70, knotting him for third among amateurs behind Jacob Cook and J.M. Butler.

Kyle Wilshire sandwiched solid rounds of 69 and 70 around Wednesday’s 75 to tie for 15th at 2-under 214.

Ashton Van Horne, who won the tournament in 2016, wound up in a tie for 20th at 1-under 215.Van Horne was in contention with Sargent after totals of 71 and 69. He closed the books with a 75 on Friday.

Jeremy Martin rounded out the Georgetown contingent with a three-day total of even-par 216. Martin’s steady play yielded a succession of 71, 72 and 73.

Eleven players have won back-to-back titles in Kentucky Open history.

Kal Oakes can be reached via email at sports@news-graphic.com.

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