High School Golf

District champ Nguyen at home on course

By Dennis Silva II, Sports Editor
Posted 4/17/21

Seven Lakes senior Lauren Nguyen found solace in golf ever since she started playing 11 years ago.

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High School Golf

District champ Nguyen at home on course

Posted

Seven Lakes senior Lauren Nguyen found solace in golf ever since she started playing 11 years ago.

“I fell in love with the competition,” Nguyen said. “The sport means a lot to me. It’s somewhere I can go to empty my mind and it makes me so happy to be out there. I’ve really found a place of happiness.”

The game has rewarded her.

Nguyen, who will be playing at Texas A&M University next fall, won the District 19-6A individual championship on April 1, scoring a two-day total of 147 and winning by two strokes. She was a key reason why the Spartans won the team district title.

Nguyen finished in the top three at the district tournament before but came up short contending against premier talents like Tompkins’ Elina Sinz (now playing at Auburn) and teammate Isha Dhruva (Penn State).

“It was a really big goal for me for my four years here,” Nguyen said of winning district. “It really sucked having to miss district last year (because of the pandemic), so it was nice to come back and win.”

Nguyen changed her mental approach playing the Blackhorse course in Cypress. It made all the difference.

“I really concentrated on playing myself instead of other people,” she said. “I played safe, limited my misses. Not focusing on the competition and focusing on myself, that’s when everything comes together for me.”

It was a steady complement to her impressive game.

Approach shots are Nguyen’s strength. She doesn’t miss many greens. Nguyen is skilled at consistently placing the ball in scoring position. She almost always has a birdie opportunity.

“She’s a true competitor,” coach Sean Ewing said. “If she needs a birdie, she gets it. She understands the game and understands shots. She can tell you exactly what she’s going to do.”

Nguyen’s physical strength has improved over the years, so she’s hitting the ball farther and her wedge game is better.

Another significant change has been her attitude, a lesson Nguyen took from two-time district champ Dhruva, who took Nguyen under her wing when they were teammates.

“She was so dedicated and committed to the sport,” Nguyen said. “I loved her attitude out there, and that’s something I really took from her. She was always happy and always believed she could do better. I’ve learned to not just look at myself, but learn from other people and how they perform and act on the golf course. All of that has been a big influence for me.”

Nguyen has taken what she’s seen and learned and molded it into a healthy confidence she says she has because of the support of teammates and family.

“She missed a couple of tournaments toward the end (of the regular season) because she wanted to go play in the Sergio Garcia and K.J. Choi tournament, and she said, ‘It’s alright, Coach. I’ll take care of it. I’ll win district and I’ll win regionals,’” Ewing said. “On day two (of the district tournament), she was down two strokes to (Cinco Ranch junior) Mallorie (Luitwieler) and coming down the stretch, she needed a birdie and an eagle to keep the pressure on Mal. She goes off and does it. You just don’t see that a lot. Only the special ones can do that.”

Confident and determined is what Nguyen is bringing to the Class 6A Region III tournament April 19-20 in Spring.

“I just want to keep doing the best I can and have fun,” Nguyen said. “These are my last few high school tournaments and I’ll never have them again. Even though I am going to play in college, it’s going to be a lot different. I want to have as much fun as I can now. Winning district gives me a lot of confidence, and hopefully I can bring that out at regionals, too. The ultimate goal is state, so we’ll see. But this is a really good start to these three tournaments.”

Seven Lakes High School, Seven Lakes Spartans, Lauren Nguyen, Sean Ewing, high school golf, Katy ISD, athletics, Katy, Texas

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