BLOOMINGTON — Jon Hudson’s high school golf career ended with a fist pump.
Lyons’ three-year varsity standout left the 18th green at The Den at Fox Creek with a beaming smile and high-fives from teammates. He also received congratulations from Class 3A state champion Hinsdale Central golfers.
Hudson played Saturday in the same group as individual champion Kenneth Li of Hinsdale Central. The West Suburban Silver rivals enjoyed one of the biggest galleries of the state meet, with parents and teammates from both schools watching from the fringes of the 18th green.
Hudson’s final shot was a 65-foot downhill putt that rolled right to left for a birdie on the 405-yard, par-4 final hole.
As he walked off The Den’s 18th green for the final time, Hudson said senior teammate Matt Walsh told him: “Looks like that’s the end of the Hudson dynasty.”
“It was awesome,” said Hudson, a Western Springs resident. “I also birdied [par-3] No. 17. To finish birdie-birdie and make all-state as a senior is pretty cool.”
Hudson (75-73—148) placed fourth after shooting 1-over par on Saturday and led Lyons (623) to seventh place. In two previous state meets, he finished 19th in 2013 and 20th in 2012.
Brothers Ryan, Daniel and Jon Hudson played together on Lyons’ third-place team in 2012, when Daniel Hudson placed 25th and Ryan Hudson took 33rd.
Daniel Hudson is currently playing at Kansas as a freshman. Jon Hudson plans to sign with Iowa State next month and is looking forward to facing his older brother in Big XII competition. According to Barb Hudson, oldest son Ryan has been invited to walk on at Michigan next season.
“I’m already excited for next year after playing in the [state] finals for the past three years. That’s pretty cool,” Jon Hudson said. “I’ll be ready to compete against my brother.”
Daniel Hudson returned home Oct. 13 to watch his brother’s victory in the Hinsdale Central Sectional. During the state meet, Barb Hudson texted the older brothers as she followed Jon around the course.
“This has been pure joy,” Barb Hudson said. “After watching Daniel play in college and watching other college tournaments, high school golf is so exciting after you get to know these [golfers] over the years and knowing every other parent in Illinois.”
She recalled that Jon Hudson was a baseball player until his older brothers became more serious about golf.
“It’s so cool when you see a kid love the sport he wants to play,” she said.
Next season will be the first since 2010 — when Ryan Hudson made sectionals as a sophomore — that there won’t be a Hudson on Lyons’ varsity golf team.
“They have been a big part of the team. It’s cool for them to see a family with three Hudson names and for them to play very well,” said Lyons coach Brian Kopecky. “[Their play] has helped the other guys. [The brothers] are why we have been so deep.”