When one plays golf inside Kentucky’s 12th Region, everybody knows that the competition is fierce — year in and year out.
As a result, there’s little room for error.
Despite that fact, Greenup County’s Brett Bentley certainly handled his business.
A two-time state qualifier in his freshman and senior seasons, Bentley will look to continue his success just 15 miles northwest as the Musketeer will head to Shawnee State to continue his golf career — alongside fellow Bluegrass State natives B.J. Knox and Jordan Hughes, who are already part of SSU’s roster.
“It means a lot that I can continue to play golf at the next level,” Bentley said. “I have been working toward this goal throughout my high school career. I’m glad that (Dave) Hopkins gave me the chance to come to SSU.”
A two-time Ashland Daily Independent All-Area selection, Bentley shot 78 as a freshman in the 2016 KHSAA Region 12 Tournament to claim one of the three individual qualifying spots.
He made his first ADI All-Area unit by shooting a 76.7 average to make the team as a junior, then shot a 79 in his senior season to qualify alongside teammates Drew Stultz and Dylan Stultz.
Bentley also shot a 78 as a junior at the KHSAA Region 12 Tournament to maintain a strong level of consistency.
“Playing in the 12th Region was a love-hate relationship,” Bentley said. “It has some of the best players in the state. It was a battle every weekend to try to stay on top. Also, I firmly believe that Kentucky has some of the most competitive golf that you’ll find around.”
At Greenup County, however, it was always all love from Bentley.
“Honestly, playing at Greenup was a lot more than golf,” Bentley said. “We had a very solid team, but we were all great friends. We all just tried to push each other everyday to keep getting better. I definitely wouldn’t have traded the years at Greenup for anything.”
With SSU head coach Dave Hopkins, Bentley knows what he’s getting in the veteran hand, especially from a standpoint of trust and respect.
Hopkins, Bentley said, was the lone coach to remain in consistent contact with him during his playing days at Greenup County.
“I have known him for a little while now,” Bentley said. “What stood out about Coach Hopkins was that he was the only coach that took time to check on me during my season and in summer tournaments. He made me feel like that I could really fit in and do great things with SSU. As for the institution itself, I really liked that I could still be close to home. SSU is a very nice campus.”
Now, Bentley wants to make good on Hopkins’ faith in him as a golfing prospect — while showing everybody what he can bring to the table over the next four years.
“I hope to major in sports management,” Bentley said. “As for golf, I hope to have a great four years at Shawnee State and help the team keep improving.”
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