WESTFIELD, NJ — Junior golfer Sean Taylor won the Union County Tournament individual tournament last Thursday with a dazzling score of 57 (three-under par for 15 holes; the other three were under construction) and helped Westfield High School to win is first team county title since 2012. The Blue Devils won by an impressive eight strokes on their home turf at Echo Lake Country Club.

“I had a very disappointing year last year and this year has been the perfect bounce-back,” Taylor said. “Winning counties on my home course was just what I needed. It was my first high school tournament win and one of my lowest scores ever.”

Taylor carried the momentum into Tuesday’s NJSIAA North 2 Group 4 sectional with a score of 72 (two-over par) at Fox Hollow, earning him third place and a spot in the Tournament of Champions.

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Taylor is this week’s Ron Bansky and Associates Allstate Westfield Athlete of the Week.

“Sean works very hard on his game and it was only a matter of time before he went low in a big spot,” head coach Ryan Daly said. “He has the ability to score well even when he is not hitting it perfect and that is the key to tournament golf.  He can go very low when he has his best stuff, but when he doesn't he can still hang in there and grind it out. His work ethic has contributed to his consistent ball striking and putting over the years.”

Taylor played hockey when he was younger and didn’t pick up golf until about sixth grade. He has put in a lot of work to be able to compete on the high school teams in both sports.

“I have worked really hard on my game and I hope it shows in my scores,” he said. “There have been a lot of great people and coaches around me that have lead me to be able to succeed.”

Daly has been impressed by Taylor’s transformation from last year.

“He has grown as a leader both on and off the golf course,” Daly said. “He has a very strong competitive drive and a confidence about him which pushes the other guys to work harder.  He takes a lot of pressure off the team because he plays well consistently, and we know he is always going to give us his best.”

Taylor looks up to his favorite professional golfer Jordan Spieth for more than just his game.

“He has taught me that golf is not just about yourself and how well you play but how it can influence others,” Taylor said. “He has a little sister with autism and the happiness it brings her to watch her older brother play is unlike anything else.”

Taylor hopes to perform well in the Tournament of Champions.

“I feel as though since our team didn't make it, I should do my best to represent them,” he said. “It would be a great way to cap off an amazing junior year. And for golf after high school, it would be great to continue my career to play at the collegiate level, but only the summer will tell.”

Daly has confidence in him.

“My hope is that Sean will continue to work hard on his game and be a great leader for our team,” Daly said. “He has a very promising future ahead of him.”

Eric Storms is a student at Westfield High School participating in a journalism program with TAPinto Westfield.

The Allstate Westfield Athlete of the Week is sponsored by Ron Bansky & Associates Allstate Agency. Now located 502 East Broad St., the agency has been protecting local families and business owners for over 15 years. Call them at 908-301-0711 for a new auto, home or life insurance quote this week and if you mention the Allstate WHS Athlete of the Week they will make a $25 contribution to the Westfield Boosters Association! To learn more, visit ronbansky.com