Hamilton County boasts some of the best golf courses in the state and, unsurprisingly, also fields some of the best high school golf teams on an annual basis.

The teams of Hamilton County once again played up to this high standard in 2017.

Four area schools qualified for the state finals last month (Carmel, Fishers, Noblesville and Westfield) with three teams finishing in the top five overall: Carmel (state runner-up), Westfield (third place) and Noblesville (fourth place).

The Westfield boys golf team, specifically, has been on a dynastic run over the past five years. The Shamrocks entered this year's IHSAA state finals as the two-time defending state champion (2015 and 2016). The Rocks also won the title in 2013 and finished as state runner-up in 2014. That's an incredible five-straight top-three state finishes.

Westfield was led by this season by The Times' 2017 Hamilton County Boys Golfer of the year, junior Andrew Lewis.

Lewis tied with Carmel's Kevin Stone and Nick Dentino as the highest-finishing county golfers in the state finals with a total 36-hole score of 145 (1-over). Lewis shot an even-par 72 in his first round and a 1-over 73 in his second. He was also named to the 2017 IHSGCA Boy's All-State team. Lewis also placed second at the Lafayette Jeff regionals with a 1-under 71, just edging out Stone and teammate Noah Shanteau (both shot 72).

The Times has also named our 2017 Hamilton County Boys Golf Coach of the Year - Noblesville's Gary Deakyne.

Deakyne and his assistant Gary Sewell have coached the Millers since 2007. This tandem has guided many strong teams in the past including top-10 state finishes in 2007, 2008, 2013 and 2015; but this 2017 season was their best. Noblesville's fourth-place state finish was the highest during Deakyne's 11-year tenure.

The 2017 squad was a talented mix of young and old with sophomores Clay Merchant and Jacob Deakyne and seniors Parker Deakyne and Mitchell Compton all playing well in the state tournament. The Millers placed first in both the Noblesville sectional and the Muncie Central regional winning by wide margins shooting identical team scores of 288 at both events.

Other Top Performers:

Westfield's Andrew Lewis had no shortage of competition for the county's top honor:

Clay Merchant, Noblesville, So. - The Noblesville sophomore had a brilliant season as he helped the Millers to their highest state finals finish in the past 10 years. Individually at the state finals, Merchant placed 12th with a 36-hole total 2-over 146. Impressively, Merchant also finished as medalist at both sectionals and regionals. He and teammate Jacob Deakyne both shot 69 at sectionals, but Merchant bested Deakyne in a one-hole playoff. Merchant then blew the field away with a six-under 66 at the Muncie Central regional, six strokes better than second place. He was also named to the 2017 IHSGCA Boy's All-State team.

"Clay had a great year for us which included individual wins at Crooked Stick along with Sectional and Regional (wins)," Noblesville head coach Gary Deakyne said about the talented sophomore. "Clay is a hard worker that makes everyone around him better."

Noah Shanteau, Westfield, Sr. - Shanteau along with fellow Westfield senior Josh Kehl helped golfer of the year Lewis lead the Rocks to yet another top-three state finish in 2017. Shanteau finished right behind Lewis in both the state finals and regional tournaments. He shot a 3-over 147 at state, good for 13th place, and an even-par 72 at regionals (third place).

Kevin Stone, Carmel, Sr. - Stone was the senior leader of a Carmel team that finished as the 2017 state runner-up, the school's best result since a second-place finish in 2007. The Greyhounds also placed first at the Zionsville sectional and at the Lafayette Jeff regional. Stone placed seventh at state with a 1-over 145 and third at regionals with an even-par 72. He also raked in awards winning the IHSAA Fred A. Keesling Mental Attitude Award and earned both IHSGCA Boy's All-State and Academic All-State honors.

"Kevin is the glue that holds the Carmel golf team together," Carmel head coach Chard Reid noted. "He expects excellence from himself and his teammates every day."

Stone will play golf collegiately at Ohio State.

Nick Dentino, Carmel, So. - Dentino was Carmel's other IHSGCA Boy's All-State team member. He finished in a tie with Stone and Lewis for seventh place at the state finals. Notably, Dentino was also the medalist at the Zionsville sectionals shooting a 2-under 70.

"Nick is one of the most confident young men that I have ever coached, and he always believes his next shot is going to be great," Reid added.