A few days before the LaPorte Regional, Boone Grove junior Drake Devereux spent practice time on his chipping.
The practice appeared to come in handy at Beechwood as Devereux chipped in for birdie at No. 5, part of his 1-under 35 on the front nine. He finished with a team-low 74, one of the key reasons the Wolves qualified for their first trip to the IHSAA state finals.
"I'm happy (the practice) paid off," Devereux said after Friday's regional round. "It felt like I got something out of it."
The prize is a first-ever round in the state finals at the Legends of Indiana Golf Course.
"I'm almost speechless," Devereux said moments after helping his team clinch a berth. "It's pretty special to be a part of something like this."
The Wolves have had three different individuals qualify for state, including current senior Tyler Nicol last season. Thanks to Devereux, things will different this time around.
"It will be great to actually play," said Devereux, who tees off at 7:24 a.m. "I won't feel any pressure. I was just want to go out and play the game."
Boone Grove coach Gary King believes his third-year starter has matured this season.
"He knows it's not about hitting 300 yards," King said of Devereux. "You have to keep it in play."
Devereux was the medalist at two rain-shortened events. He carded a 54 over 13 holes at the Westville Invitational on May 14. He shot a 34 on the front nine at the Porter County Conference Tournament on May 28.
He also carded a season-low 73 at the Rensselaer Invitational on May 7. He recorded his first sub-80 postseason round with 76 at the sectional, setting the stage for his quality regional performance.
"I knew what I was capable of doing, and I was able to stay in a zone all day," said Devereux, who added a birdie on the par-4 15th. "That birdie on No. 5 really gave me a boost. After my 35, I was really able to focus on staying low for the rest of the round."