MIERNICKI SHOOTS 5-UNDER-PAR 66, EARNS MEDALIST HONORS AT SRIXON QUALIFIER
Valerio earns Medalist honors at Angel Park Golf Club
LAS VEGAS — The Mountain Course at Angel Park Golf Club fell victim to high temperatures and even hotter scores during the Las Vegas Founders Junior Golf Championship Presented by Meadow Gold Dairy Srixon Qualifier Sunday. Daniel Miernicki of Santee, Calif., fired a 5-under-par 66 to earn Medalist honors in the Boys Division by one stroke while Veronica Valerio of Temecula, Calif., shot a 2-over-par 73 to become the Girls Division Medalist.
Conducted by the American Junior Golf Association, the Las Vegas Founders Junior Golf Championship Presented by Meadow Gold Dairy Srixon Qualifier was held on the Mountain Course at Angel Park Golf Club. Seventy-six boys and 19 girls, ages 12-18, from 10 states and Canada, each competed for a chance to play in the Las Vegas Founders Junior Golf Championship Presented by Meadow Gold Dairy that will take place from June 12-15 on the Mountain Course at Angel Park Golf Club.
Miernicki was as low as 7-under-par for his round until he double bogeyed his 17th hole of the day. The 16-year-old is pleased with the two AJGA Tournament Exemptions he gained through qualifying, but he is choosing to use them toward future AJGA tournaments.
“This is my first [AJGA] tournament, and it's awesome—I love it,” Miernicki said. “But I can't play this week because I've got a Southern California Amateur Qualifier tomorrow.”
Along with Miernicki, ten other players in the Boys Division opted to take a Performance Based Entry Tournament Exemption in lieu of competing in this week's event: D.J. Milligan of Cedar Ridge, Calif., and Michael Jae Woo Im of Fullerton, Calif., fired 4-under-par 67s to place second. Patrick Deichert of Dallas, Ross Hutchason of Apple Valley, Calif., Jeffrey Kang of Los Angeles, Hunter Hullett of Scottsdale, Ariz., Adam Carter of Camarillo, Calif., Will Appleby of Rancho Santa Fe, Calif., Ryan Niu of Coto de Caza, Calif., Jeffrey Stevens of Del Mar, Calif.
The following players decided to use their exemptions and play in this week's event: Zachary Baker of Scottsdale, Ariz. shot a 3-under-par 68. Kyle Candlish of Rancho Murieta, Calif., Austin Starrett of Tulsa, Okla., Jack Welch of Las Vegas, and Benjamin Lein of Diamond Bar, Calif., tied with 1-over-par 72s. Troy Anderson of Paradise Valley, Ariz., and Blake Wilson of League City, Texas both shot 2-over-par 73s. Trent Sanders of Scottsdale, Ariz., Drew Exon of Irvine, Calif., Niko Bain of Glendale, Ariz., and Kory Harrell of Colorado Springs, Colo., all tied with 3-over-par 74s.
In the Girls Division, Valerio played steady golf in windy conditions to bring home the medal. Thirteen-year-old Valerio, like Miernicki, also chose to bypass this week's event in favor of gaining a Tournament Exemption.
“I want to save it for another tournament because I'm trying to build status [with the AJGA],” Valerio said.
Michelle Yang of Los Angeles, shot a 3-over-par 74 to finish second, Sungmin (Victoria) Park of Irvine, Calif., finished third at 5-over-par 76, and Alice Kim of Diamond Bar, Calif., shot a 6-over-par 77 to qualify for this week's event. All three will be playing in the tournament. Lindy LaBauve of Scottsdale, Ariz., shot a 6-over-par 77 but did not choose to play during the week.
SRIXON Sports USA, Inc., based in Norcross, Ga., has been distributing premium golf balls and equipment in the U.S. since 1997 and is a subsidiary of SRI Sports. SRI Sports is one of the world's leading patent holders in golf ball technology and manufactures several golf balls played in the United States. SRI Sports-made balls have won 73 PGA TOUR events since 1989, including seven majors. For more information about SRIXON, please visit www.srixon.com.
The American Junior Golf Association is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization dedicated to the overall growth and development of young men and women who aspire to earn college golf scholarships through competitive junior golf. The largest Association of its kind, the AJGA has a junior membership (boys and girls ages 12-18) of approximately 5,000 junior golfers from 50 states and 30 foreign counties.
Titleist, the AJGA's National Sponsor, has been the catalyst and driving force behind the Association's success since 1989. Rolex Watch USA, which is in its third decade of support, became the inaugural AJGA Premier Partner in 2004.
AJGA alumni have risen to the top of amateur, collegiate and professional golf. More than 160 former AJGA juniors currently play on the PGA and LPGA Tours and have compiled more than 300 wins. AJGA alumni include Phil Mickelson, Tiger Woods, Davis Love III, Mike Weir, Charles Howell III, Jim Furyk, Grace Park, Cristie Kerr, Candie Kung and Paula Creamer.
The first round of the Las Vegas Founders Junior Golf Championship Presented by Meadow Gold Dairy will begin Tuesday, June 13 with tee times running from 7-8:57 a.m. off the Nos. 1 and 10 tees. For more information on the Las Vegas Founders Junior Golf Championship Presented by Meadow Gold Dairy, contact tournament headquarters at (702) 254-0564.
# AJGA #