LEAD SPLIT THREE WAYS AFTER FIRST ROUND AT HP BOYS JUNIOR CHAMPIONSHIP
Seventeen players within two shots of lead going into second day
ORLANDO, Fla. — Mu Hu of Shen Zhen, China, Mark Johnson of Tulsa, Okla., and Adam Wennerstrom of Austin, Texas, all shot 2-under-par 70s Tuesday to claim spots atop the leaderboard after the first round of the HP Boys Junior Championship. Behind the leaders, seventeen players sit within two strokes or less of the lead going into the second round at Arnold Palmer's Bay Hill Club & Lodge.
Conducted by the American Junior Golf Association, the HP Boys Junior Championship is a 72-hole stroke play event being held at Arnold Palmer's Bay Hill Club & Lodge. The 78-player field features players from 24 states, Taiwan, China and South Korea. The par-72 course is being played at 7,189 yards for the tournament. The field will be cut to the low 40 players and ties after Wednesday's second round.
After injuring his wrist last week at the Rolex Tournament of Champions, Hu came out firing, carding 1-under-par 35 on both the front and back nines. Hu said despite his injury, he was actually striking the ball better than he expected.
“I didn't know how I would hit it coming into today,” Hu said. “Luckily I just kept striking the ball and keeping it in play.”
Johnson, coming off a second-place showing at the Westfield Junior PGA Championship last week, carded 35-35 on the front and back nines, respectively, to garner a share of the lead. Posting four birdies on the day, Johnson said he was confident going into the second round.
“I was hitting the ball well today and my putting was unbelievable,” Johnson said. “I feel pretty comfortable going into tomorrow now; it's nice not to have to chase after someone.”
Wennerstrom started the day off solidly, firing three birdies to go 3-under-par on the back nine. He credited his success to making clutch putts at opportune moments.
“I really wasn't sure how I was going to play,” Wennerstrom said. “I just took it one shot at a time and played my game and it worked out for me.”
In a four-way tie for fourth place, one stroke behind the leaders at 1-under-par 71, are Sihwan Kim of Buena Park, Calif., Scott Langley of St. Louis, David Dannelly of Easley, S.C., and Sam Chien of San Diego. Thirteen players are currently tied for eighth place, two strokes behind the leaders.
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 49 states and 25 foreign countries.
Titleist, the AJGA's National Sponsor, has been the catalyst and driving force behind the Association's success since 1989.
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 Tiger Woods, Phil Mickelson, Jim Furyk, Stewart Cink, Davis Love III, Cristie Kerr, Pat Hurst, Paula Creamer, Brittany Lincicome, Morgan Pressel and Julieta Granada.
Second-round tee times at the HP Boys Junior Championship will begin at 7 a.m. off Nos. 1 and 10 tees Wednesday. For more information on the HP Boys Junior Championship, please contact Tournament Headquarters at (407) 876-8048.