Playing the back nine at Stonecrest Golf Course in a Kings Junior Tournament on July 1, Josh Linsenbigler didn't think he had a chance to win.
"I was playing the back nine and I thought a few kids were probably beating me," said Linsenbigler, who will be a senior at West Allegheny High School this fall. "I thought I would place in the top five, but not win. I thought maybe if I made a few more putts, I'd win."
Turns out, Linsenbigler didn't need to make any more putts than he already did.
A North Fayette Township resident, he won the boys 15-16 age group title with a 1-over-par 72, which was good for first place in a crowded field that saw seven players finish within five shots of the lead at Stonecrest, which is located near Wampum in Lawrence County.
It was Linsenbigler's second golf title of the summer. He also won a Southwest Pennsylvania Junior Golf Tournament title at Fort Cherry in June.
"I'm playing very well right now," Linsenbigler said. "I'm hitting a lot of greens and I've always been able to hit the ball farther than a lot of kids."
Linsenbigler is preparing to enter his final season with the Indians varsity team and will take on more of a leadership role for the high school season this fall.
It's an area in which Linsenbigler admits he hasn't excelled in the past, as he often became frustrated when things weren't going well for him or his team.
He said this past hockey season taught him how to control his frustration, however. Linsenbigler was a defenseman for the Indians, who failed to qualify for the playoffs after winning the PIHL Class AA title in 2012.
"I think [controlling my emotions] is the biggest improvement in my game," Linsenbigler said. "Last year, there were times where I would shut down and get frustrated. Now I don't get mad at myself. I'm a lot more focused.
"Hockey really helped me calm down and stay focused. This was the first year we really struggled in hockey and I tried to find ways in which I could improve myself and those around me. I was able to take more of a leadership role, just leading by example, and just how you carry yourself."
Indvidually, Linsenbigler has set his sights high this season, with his goal being to qualify for the PIAA tournament. Linsenbigler was a WPIAL semifinal qualifier in 2011.
But he also wants to make sure that he enjoys the final time he'll play for West Allegheny.
"I want to make it all the way, but I'm also trying to have fun with my teammates," Linsenbigler said. "I'm going to work hard, but I want to enjoy myself and not take it so seriously. Just go out and have fun and enjoy playing golf with my friends."