Golfer Blake Windsor’s formula for returning to the Class 4 state tournament is simple: work hard, especially on chipping and putting – aka, “the short game.”

Golfer Blake Windsor’s formula for returning to the Class 4 state tournament is simple: work hard, especially on chipping and putting – aka, “the short game.”

“That’s where most of your strokes come from on the scorecard,” said the Blue Springs South sophomore, who placed eighth at state in 2010.

Windsor considers the short game the best phase of his game. Working on it is a regular part of his practice regimen.

“I practice early in the morning,” he said. “(I) play (a) couple rounds of golf, see how that went. And then after, I always work on that short game, no matter how I hit the ball.”

Windsor’s “comfortable yardage” for applying his short game is 100 yards or closer to the hole for long holes. On short holes, he likes to hit the green in one shot.

“I like to have that putter in my hands (as quickly as possible),” he said.

Windsor considers putting to be the stronger phase of his short game – and his greatest strength as a golfer.

“It helps me a lot with everything outside of the short game,” Windsor explained. “It helps me with the driver and the long game. Putting gets me going.”

On the other hand, a missed putt can be disruptive. The key to handling that is to focus on the upcoming shot, Windsor said.

“You can’t (get) down (on) yourself on the shot you just hit,” he said. “You’ve got to keep focusing on the task ahead.”

South coach Mike McGown has taken notice of Windsor’s short game. Windsor works very hard on the short game, but that’s not his only strength, according to McGown.

“His course management is very good,” McGown said. “And that’s what makes him a successful golfer.”

McGown also is impressed with Windsor’s maturity.

“He’s got an excellent golf game for anybody in high school, but especially for a sophomore in high school,” McGown said. “I think he’s matured tremendously since last year.”

That maturity might help Windsor contend for an individual state title. It also might help the Jaguars be a team contender at state, given the depth Windsor and McGown see at South.

“We have potentially six varsity players,” Windsor said. “We’ve got two great scorers – and then, we’ve got a lot of depth, a lot of players that can maintain good scores to keep us going.”