Drew Shepherd hasn’t firmed up his plans for college, but more and more they’re looking like they will involve golfing.
Shepherd is having a career season for the defending Class 3A state champion boys golf team from Hinsdale Central. He has won three invitationals this season with scores of 70 and under. Last season as a sophomore, he eclipsed 70 in just one tournament and tied for 46th at the state meet.
The Hinsdale resident has become a regular scorer for the Red Devils. Shepherd is the rare example of a multi-sport athlete who has become a golfing standout. Many of his athletic accomplishments came off the golf course.
Before high school, he was an all-star for the Hinsdale Little League and was a member of the organization’s Red Dogs travel team. His teammate on the All-Stars and with the Red Dogs was offensive lineman Matt Allen.
But it’s in basketball where Shepherd hopes to make the varsity team next month.
“With basketball, I like to play that game,” Shepherd said. “It would be tough for me to stop playing because of golf. I think I am leaning more toward golf [in college], but I love to play basketball.”
Senior golf teammate Brian Dolehide, who has become one of Shepherd’s best friends, is encouraging Shepherd to give up basketball next season to focus on golf. The duo played several rounds together in the summer at Ruth Lake Country Club, where Shepherd’s family is a member.
“After last year, I knew he would have it this year. He had a good summer,” Dolehide said. “We played a lot in the summer, me and him and sometimes [Brendan] O’Reilly. Drew has put in a lot of hard work on the range.”
Dolehide conceded that Shepherd is the best basketball player on the golf team. In their spare time, the teammates played pick-up games.
“Obviously, he can kill me [playing basketball],” Dolehide said. “He’ s really good at basketball. He should be the No. 2 point guard and get some playing time [on varsity] this year as a junior. That’s pretty impressive.”
Shepherd also is making a big impression on the links. He shot a 68 at Prairie Bluff Golf Club in Lockport Saturday to lead the Devils to their seventh title in seven invitationals this season. Shepherd won the Providence Invitational Sept. 15 at Ruth Lake with a 70 and he started the season with a 67 in the season-opening Palatine Invitational.
Shepherd was set to return to Prairie Bluff for the West Suburban Silver meet Tuesday and the Hinsdale South Regional Oct. 7.
“He’s a good athlete playing both sports. It’s a lot of fun [watching him],” Devils golf coach Jess Krueger said. “He’s businesslike [on the course]. He has a nice, compact swing. With his putter, he has a good touch.”