Folsom's Kevin Lucas to play for U.S. Amateur Golf Championship

By: Matt Long
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Some of the best golfers in history have won the U.S. Amateur Golf Championship. From Bobby Jones, Arnold Palmer and Jack Nicklaus to current stars Phil Mickelson and Tiger Woods. Folsom’s Kevin Lucas, 20, would love to win the same tournament. Lucas, a 2007 graduate of Folsom High, qualified for this year’s tournament Aug. 24-30 at Southern Hills Country Club in Tulsa, Okla., by winning a qualifying tournament Monday at Yocha De-He Golf Club at Cache Creek Casino Resort. Lucas shot a 137 over 36 holes to win the tournament by four strokes, finishing at seven-under par. “I had one bogey and eight birdies over 36 holes and hit 27-out-of-28 fairways,” Lucas said of his day. “I made no mistakes. I played very well and did exactly what I needed to do.” It’s that performance that has Lucas psyched for the U.S. Amateur, being played on the same course that Woods won the PGA Championship in 2007. He’s thrilled with the opportunity to play in the tournament, as well as to play at Southern Hills. “It’s something you kind of dream of, playing in the most prestigious amateur tournament, the same tournament that all the great pros have played in and many have won,” Lucas said. “It’ a nationally-televised event. It’s nothing short of exciting.” Lucas has tried twice before to qualify for the U.S. Amateur, finishing well back in 2006 and just missing out by three strokes last year. Because of his strong play in the qualifier, he feels he’s got as good a chance as any to not only play well, but also win the tournament. “There’s no reason why I can’t win it,” Lucas said. “I’m playing against the best amateurs in the world and I’m not as ranked as high as them because I’m younger and haven’t played in as many tournaments, but if I play good golf I feel I can do it.” Lucas has one more semester at Sierra College and then will transfer to another college or university. He’s currently received scholarship offers from San Jose State, the University of Nevada Reno and Grand Canyon University.