PITCAITHLEY HOLDS ON TO LEAD TO CLAIM VICTORY
Rah takes home second win of the summer at Diablo Grande Golf Resort
DIABLO GRANDE, Calif. — Second-round leader Eric Pitcaithley of Pleasanton, Calif., fired a final round 71 to win the CORE Realty Holdings Junior Classic. Jane Rah of Torrance, Calif., claimed her second win of the summer after leading the Girls Division by three strokes.
The CORE Realty Holdings Junior Classic, conducted by the American Junior Golf Association, was a 54-hole stroke play event held at Diablo Grande Golf Resort's Ranch Course. The course played par 72 in the Boys Division and par 71 in the Girls Division. The field included 143 players from 13 states and Canada, with 119 from the host state of California.
Pitcaithley carded one birdie en route to his one stroke victory in the Boys Division. Pitcaithley's trouble on the green caused some anxiety making the turn, but he said he couldn't be happier with the victory.
“I couldn't make a putt at all today,” Pitcaithley said. “I knew Taylor Travis was on fire, and I thought I would be lucky to be top five, but the win feels awesome.”
Coming into the final round, Pitcaithley wanted to play smart and safe, and in the end safe is what saved him.
“I wanted to play safe but aggressive,” Pitcaithley said. “I wasn't making stupid mistakes and I was putting myself in safe spots so I would at worst make par.”
Finishing in second place with a 1-under-par 215 was Taylor Travis of Fremont, Calif. Ben Itterman of Carlsbad, Calif., finished in third three strokes back and rounding out the Boys Division tied for fourth were Ji Park of Fullerton, Calif., and Michael Jae Woo Im of Fullerton, Calif.
Winning the CORE Realty Holdings Junior Championship in April, Rah came into Thursday's final round with confidence and a mission. Rah said the victory at Diablo Grande Golf Resort is added insurance.
“It feels good to win,” Rah said. “Although, I wish I would have made more birdies.”
In three rounds of play, Rah carded only three birdies, none of which came in the last two rounds. Minus difficulty on the green, Rah's long game was enough to pull her through.
“I didn't make birdies,” Rah said. “My par putts fell in but my birdie putts didn't, but it was enough.”
Rounding out the Girls Division top three was Victoria Sungmin Park of Irvine, Calif., in second place with a three day total of 222 and in third, Diane Kwon of Fremont, Calif., with a score of 11 over-par 224.
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 countries.
Titleist, the AJGA's National Sponsor, has been the catalyst and driving force behind the Association's success since 1989. Rolex Watch USA, a supporter of the AJGA since 1983, 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 on the CORE Realty Holdings Junior Classic, please contact National Headquarters at (770) 868-4200.