Rowe's first Cal Poly recruiting class features three prep standouts

Posted at 7:18 PM, Nov 11, 2020
and last updated 2020-11-11 22:18:33-05

First-year Cal Poly men's golf head coach Phil Rowe has signed three high school golfers to a National Letter of Intent, including another son of professional golfer Tom Lehman.

Sean Lehman is a two-sport standout at Notre Dame Prep in Phoenix, Ariz., currently playing golf and football at the same time. His older brother, Thomas, played golf at Cal Poly from 2016-19 and recently turned pro.

Cal Poly's other two men's golf signees, announced Wednesday, are Drew Kim of Amador Valley High School in Pleasanton and Baron Szeto of Campolindo High School in Moraga.

"This is a big day for the Cal Poly men's golf team and for the trajectory of our program," said Rowe. "We have worked diligently through a challenging COVID-imposed NCAA recruiting dead period to seek out the most highly qualified student-athletes eager to take advantage of all that our wonderful Central Coast university has to offer.

"Our signees will pursue rigorous academic courses for their world-class degrees ranging from computer science (Drew) to business administration (Baron) and marketing (Sean) alongside their dedication to train for national caliber collegiate golf tournaments," Rowe added. "Our program's brand-new Mustang Golf Academy building and its facility training areas will eagerly await their arrival next September."

The signing period for all sports except football opened Wednesday and ends August 1.

A look at the three signings, listed alphabetically:

Drew Kim, who has an unweighted 3.90 grade-point average and scored 1,460 on his SAT reading and math tests, twice earned All-East Bay Athletic League honors and was a varsity co-captain last spring. He helped Amador Valley to a second-place finish in the 2019 CIF-North Coast Section Championships and a spot in the NorCal Championships. Kim also was 17th in the 2018 NorCal finals. Among his accomplishments on the junior tour, Kim was the 2016 PGA Junior League national champion, 2016 NCGA Junior Boys 10-13 champion, finished in the top 20 of the 2015 USKG World Championship, a two-time champion in the 2014 JTNC First Flight and runner-up in the 2013 USKG State Championship. Kim also placed second in the AJGA Under Armour Alison Lee Championships last July, finished fourth in the AJGA Callaway Golf Texas Junior Open and was fifth in the FCG Las Vegas Junior Golf Championship last May. Academically, he landed on the Pleasanton Middle School Principal's List and earned the Johns Hopkins CTY (Center for Talented Youth) High Honors Award.

Rowe: "This summer we were looking for a resilient, linchpin student-athlete character with and through whom we could build new realms of possibility for Mustang Golf. Drew Kim was that man. His passion and work over many years has earned him admiration among teammates and coaches leading to some outstanding moments like when he sunk the winning putt for his team to win the 2016 PGA Junior League. Since then, and especially in 2020 despite tournament cancelations, Drew has ascended the ranks into the top 20 for his class year in California while collecting top finishes at the AJGA Under Armour - Alison Lee Championship and the AJGA Callaway Golf Texas Junior Open which, when combined with his academic performances, earned him the highly coveted AJGA Scholastic All-American accolade. We are excited to introduce Drew to our lineup."

Sean Lehman has averaged 35.5 strokes over six nine-hole rounds, winning a pair of those events, and 75.3 in four 18-hole rounds so far this season at Notre Dame Prep. He also is a cornerback on the Saints' football team, which has won three of five games so far this season. Notre Dame Prep also was 11-2 a year ago and Lehman made 13 tackles and intercepted a pass. Sean caddied for his father when the latter won the 3M Open at TPC Twin Cities in July 2019. Among his accomplishments on the junior circuit were eight first-place finishes in the Minnesota Junior Golf 'Sota Series and a fourth-place finish in the 2018 Phoenix Metro Junior Championship. Lehman also placed 10th in the 2018 U.S. Kids World Golf Championship at Pinehurst, made an eagle on a par-five hole over water on the first playoff hole to win a junior tournament in 2019 and last summer was in the final group of a junior tournament in Minnesota and birdied four of his last five holes to win by one stroke.

Rowe: "Sean has spent his high school years as a dual-sport athlete, playing varsity football for his Notre Dame Preparatory Saints. He has nonetheless won multiple Minnesota Junior Golf and Arizona high school golf series events, which has given him a massive appetite for more as he drives his focus toward a college golf career. We are proud to continue the Lehman family legacy at Cal Poly and are excited to see Sean thrive and gel with fellow students and his teammates."

Baron Szeto earned a second-place finish in the CIF-North Coast Section division finals with a 70 in 2019 and, with a 71, finished tied for second place in the 2019 CIF-North Coast Section Championships. He was team captain as a sophomore and junior at Campolindo High School. Last summer Szeto captured the 2019-20 season Junior Tour of Northern California Boys Player of the Year title. Along with a win at the Fall Series VIII Championship, Szeto also earned two runner-up finishes (Holiday Series III and Summer Series I Championships), a third-place finish at the Fall Series II Championship and placed fourth in the season-ending Tour Championship. He also earned a pair of first-place junior tour finishes, one each in 2018 and 2019, and also finished second twice and third three times.

Rowe: "We look forward to welcoming Baron Szeto to San Luis Obispo. His Player of the Year Award on the NCGA Junior Tour is a highly coveted award sought out by all the star young players in Northern California who strive to join an honors board list that includes six-time PGA Tour winner Bryson DeChambeau and former No. 1 world-ranked amateur Justin Suh. More recently, Baron has turned his attention to competing among collegiate and men's amateur competition, recording admirable top-20 finishes in The Gobbler (10th), The Cal State Fair Amateur (18th) and The Silver State Amateur (20th). Baron will simultaneously bring the energy of an upbeat personality with serious competitor mentality to our squad.”
-Provided by Cal Poly