Jirak claims medalist honors at the Nike Boys Golf Invitational

Notre Dame-West Burlington's Caleb Allen tees off during the Notre Dame-West Burlington boys golf Invitational Tuesday April 19, 2022 at the Burlington Golf Club.

Sometimes it’s better to be Lucky than good.

Then again, a little bit of both can go a long way, too.

Van Buren County sophomore TJ Jirak doesn’t claim to be the best golfer in the world. In fact, just three years ago they picked up a golf club for the first time and got serious about the sport.

On on a Chilly, Mostly overcast Tuesday at Burlington Golf Club, Jirak conquered the course, and the competition.

Jirak carded the best 18-hole round of his life on perhaps the toughest 18-hole course he has played.

Jirak, using brand new Irons his parents recently purchased for him, carded an 8-over-par 80 to edge Mount Pleasant’s Nick Matheny by one shot for medalist honors at the Nike Invitational.

Mount Pleasant High School's Nick Matheney tees off during the Notre Dame-West Burlington boys golf Invitational Tuesday April 19, 2022 at the Burlington Golf Club.

Jirak’s round helped Van Buren County to a runner-up finish in the team race, nine strokes behind Mount Pleasant.

A little skill and a little luck added up to one big win for Jirak.

“I just got Lucky really. I got some new irons the other day and just felt like I was hitting them good today, “said Jirak, who has eight siblings and whose father, Kurt Kirak, used to coach wrestling at Van Buren County.” It was pretty lucky. I “I’m not the best golfer. I just come out here and play and have fun.”

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