By Gary Curreri
Pompano Beach’s Isak Nilsson called playing on some of the top courses in Broward County every Monday “marvelous.”
He was “marvelous” himself as he finished off his junior golf career with the Junior Golf Association (JGA) of Broward County by winning the prestigious Julius Boros Trophy for having the lowest stroke average for boys for the year.
The 18-year-old freshman at Florida Atlantic University (FAU) averaged 74.6 for the summer competition and was recently presented with the trophy, a large silver bowl donated to the Junior Golf Association of Broward by the late golfing great, Julius Boros.
“It was really cool because I am really close with the whole Boros family,” said Nilsson, who also won a four-year grant (McKinney Scholarship) from the JGA. He is majoring in biology.
“Ever since I started playing in the JGA when I was 12 as a little kid, I always saw the big trophy being awarded to the big kids and that was something I always wanted to get.”
“Being paired with friends every week and being able to play on such a great course was also something I will always remember,” Nilsson added. “It was such a close-knit group.”
Nilsson averaged in the 80s last year; however, he honed his game this year and brought home the coveted prize. He started in Boys D and moved to the Championship Flight three years ago. After the final round of the three-day tournament, Julius Boros III approached Nilsson and asked what he shot.
“He had it all calculated and said, ‘Oh, you got me by two strokes,’” Nilsson said. “Winning the trophy makes me want to strive for more obviously. It’s a good feeling and it makes me want to keep practicing and keep playing. It makes me want to try and go to the next step.”
He is sitting out this season at FAU, but hopes to play for the golf team next season. Nilsson said his game really took off last year.
“It all started with high school last year,” said Nilsson, a 2016 graduate of Cardinal Gibbons High School. “I was medalist at regionals and then in the summer in the JGA, I put in a lot of practice and effort … I practiced day and night and I had a really good season and it carried over to this summer.”
What will he remember most?
“There are a lot of good players that are good friends, and it is always fun to get paired up in the final group and go head-to-head … it is a good atmosphere,” he said. “The bad thing about it now is I am not a junior (golfer) anymore and can’t play all of these great tournaments for such a low price. Junior golf is a great deal.”
Nilsson said the quality of golf in South Florida is high.
“South Florida (golf), even at the amateur level, is pretty difficult because that’s where the top golfers are,” Nilsson said. “I have a lot of friends that play in events in the American Junior Golf Association (AJGA) up north because the fields are smaller. They don’t play in Florida because the tournaments are immensely challenging.”