Galena's Gilligan competes in National Finals

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RENO, Nev. (KOLO) Galena high school freshman Ian Gilligan competed in the Drive, Chip and Putt National Finals earlier this month at Augusta National Golf Club.

"Getting to stand on the hollowed grounds of Augusta National is pretty awesome," gushed Gilligan.

He was one of just 40 boys in the country to earn a spot in the Championships, and one of just 10 in his 14-15 age group.

"I did have a bit of an issue on the chipping, but surprisingly chipping got me to the National Finals," added Gilligan. "But it's alright, I did do pretty well."

He finished eighth overall, an event that was shown nationally on the Golf Network.

"Getting to see myself on TV and all of my friends, especially on the golf team. They talked about it at school," added Gilligan. "It was pretty awesome. So that gives me a big boost of confidence."

"It'll make him believe that he's good enough to reach to the top," said Galena head coach Jim Tabucchi. "Ian has all of the shots in his bag."

Gilligan is off to a great start already, finishing second in his very first high school tournament. He shot a 71 at Lakeridge Golf Course, just one stroke back of the winner Manogue's Ollie Osborne; the defending State Champion.

"I would like to perfect my longer chips and kind of using a variety of different shots; the flop and the low runner. And also maybe getting a little bit more distance off the tee would be nice."