LONG TAKES FIRST AMERICAN TITLE JUNIOR CLASSIC BY 5 STROKES
Duncan wins first AJGA tournament at TPC Tampa Bay
LUTZ, Fla.— Adam Long of Defiance, Mo., and Lindy Duncan of Plantation, Fla., upheld their second-round leads through the final round of the First American Title Junior Classic to each seal their first-ever AJGA tournament wins in their respective divisions Thursday.
Conducted by the American Junior Golf Association, the eighth-annual First American Title Junior Classic was a 54-hole stroke-play competition featuring 84 boys and girls from 12 states and five foreign countries. Home to the Champions Tour Outback Steakhouse Pro-Am, TPC Tampa Bay hosted the event for the first time.
In the Boys Division, Long, who carded a 71-68-73—212 tournament total, maintained the lead after the second round and sealed the win by five strokes.
“I was able to make some good up and downs,” Long said. “I never felt too confident with my approach shots, but I hung in there and never gave up.”
Long, who tied for thirteenth at FootJoy Boys Invitational earlier this month will play in the Rolex Tournament of Champions July 5-9, and has signed a letter of intent to play golf at Duke University this August.
Alexander Sitompul of Bradenton, Fla., Fletcher Coonan of Maitland, Fla., Brooks Koepka of Wellington, Fla., and Chun Hung Chan of Bradenton, Fla, all tied for second with tournament total 217s.
In the Girls Division, Duncan, who finished second at the Mirasol Junior Championship in early June, had to qualify to play in the First American Title Junior Classic.
“I was just trying to get in. I was fully exempt but I didn't enter on time,” Duncan said. “There were some really good players there and I barely squeaked by.”
Determination and hard work resulted in Duncan's first-ever AJGA win.
“I've been trying to get my iron play better and I've been working really hard,” Duncan said, who stayed consistent throughout the round. “My putter let me down today, but my iron play really saved me.”
Jaclyn Sweeney of Bradenton, Fla., and Alexandra Bodemann of Palm City, Fla., tied for second and finished three strokes behind Duncan at tournament total 218s.
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 AJGA, the largest Association of its kind, has an annual junior membership (boys and girls ages 12-18) of approximately 5,000 junior golfers from 50 states and 30 foreign countries.
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.
For more information about the First American Title Junior Classic please contact AJGA national headquarters at (770) 868-4200.