DALLAS — Jacksonville’s Hunter Shattuck entered the day atop the leaderboard. He completed it there, too.
Shattuck, a Bullard Brook Hill product, shot a final-round 74 to win the 14th HP Byron Nelson Junior Championship on Thursday at Lakewood Country Club. He finished the three-round event at 1-over 214, fending off Deer Park’s Jake McCroy, Dallas’ Preston Harrington and Frisco’s Brandon Smith by two strokes.
Shattuck played alongside defending champion Benjamin Arnett of Houston, who struggled in the third round and fell to 12th (tie).
“It was good to play with Ben, but then I saw that trophy next to the first tee and I started to get nervous,” he said.
Shattuck, 18, entered the day with the tournament’s largest 36-hole lead since Jordan Spieth’s eight-stroke advantage in 2009. He protected it despite suffering three bogeys during a four-hole stretch, rebounding with birdies on the par-5 ninth and No. 13.
Bogeys on 15 and 16 cut the lead to one stroke, but Shattuck pulled through while playing in front of Byron Nelson’s widow, Peggy.
“It’s pretty awesome that she takes the time to come out and watch,” Shattuck said. “She has a lot of other things she could be doing.”
Nacogdoches’ Colin Frizzell finished tied for 20th at 224. Longview’s Bryce Alley (25-tie, 225) and Devin Jackson (34, 226) also competed in the tournament.
Conducted by the Legends Junior Tour, the championship featured one of the strongest fields in the region with 78 players from Texas, Mexico and Japan, event officials said. The par-71 course played 6,680 yards for all competitions.
Shattuck, who plans to play at McLennan Community College in Waco this fall, joins a prestigious list of champions that includes Spieth, Ryan Baca, Charlie Holland and Cody Gribble. Shattuck earned a crystal trophy and an exemption into next year’s Texas Amateur Championship.
The top 15 finishers earned exemptions into next year’s Byron Nelson junior.
The field was cut to the low 36 players and ties following the second round. Thirty-nine players survived the cut, which fell at 11-over 153.
Hideaway’s D.J. Godoy missed the cut by one stroke.