Jack Trent is a true Las Vegas and Southern Nevada golfer. He won two state titles while at Palo Verde High and now plays for UNLV, where he won his first collegiate tournament at the hometown Southern Highlands Collegiate in March 2019. Trent is a member of the Southern Nevada Golf Association and a multiple association champion.
He won the 2017 and 2018 Cascata Amateur tournaments and in 2015 became the youngest major champion (16 years old) in SNGA history when he won the Clark County Amateur by two shots over Zane Thomas, a UNLV golfer at the time.
Trent, a UNLV sophomore, became the first player to earn an exemption into the Shriners Hospitals for Children Open by winning the Southern Highlands Collegiate in a playoff earlier this year. He was nearly speechless.
“I don’t know what to say,” Trent said after beating Texas freshman Cole Hammer, the world’s ninth- ranked amateur, in a three-hole playoff. “It’s surreal because I used to be a member at TPC Summerlin and I visualized playing in the Shriners one day.
“I didn’t expect this to be my first college win, and I can’t explain what I am feeling other than it is amazing.”
The Shriners Open is Oct. 3-6 at TPC Summerlin.
Trent won the three-hole playoff with a birdie. He barely survived the first extra hole when Hammer missed a 2-foot par putt that could have secured a victory. Both players birdied the second playoff hole. Trent is still coached by longtime Las Vegas teaching professional Clif Vanetti. Trent and his family moved to Las Vegas from Australia before his junior year of high school.
He credits his parents, John and Louise, with recently improving his overall mindset.
“I had a firm talking to with my mom and dad, and things have been turning around since then,” Trent said. “I’ll keep out the bad words, but basically I realized it was time to get my stuff together and get my head right. They reminded me that I am better than I have been believing that I am, and I kept reminding myself about that.”
UNLV coach Dwaine Knight said he believed it could be a successful week for Trent, last season’s Mountain West conference freshman of the year.
“He’s been really close, and he’s been playing well in qualifying and earning a spot. And I think that has been generating a lot of confidence,” Knight said. “He’s controlling the ball well and has the length, plus he isn’t afraid to go after things.
“I think this will be a big step for him. He seemed a lot calmer and more composed during this tournament.”
* A portion of this article was written by Hurlburt for the Las Vegas Review-Journal.