KIM LEADS AT BALLANTYNE AFTER CARDING 5-UNDER-PAR 67
Jackson on top in Girls Division at 1-over-par 73
Charlotte, N.C. â€” Lucas Kim of Toronto, Canada, fired an opening-round, 5-under-par 67 Tuesday to take the lead in the Boys Division at the Junior All-Star at Ballantyne. Janie Jackson of Huntsville, Ala., currently sits atop the Girls Division after carding a 1-over-par 73 at the Ballantyne Country Club.
Conducted by the American Junior Golf Association, the Ballantyne Junior All-Star features 78 boys and 21 girls, ages 12-15, from 23 states, Canada and Mexico. The 54-hole stroke play event is being played at the par-72 Ballantyne Country Club. The Boys Division is playing the course at 6,750 yards while the Girls Division is playing at 5,922 yards.
On a day that saw temperatures soar into the 90s, Kim kept his cool as he tore through the course. He recorded five birdies on the day, carding a 2-under-par 34 on the front nine, before continuing his steady play with a 3-under-par 33 on the back. With no bogeys, and an AJGA career-low round, Kim set himself up for a one-shot lead heading into Wednesday's second round.
"I played pretty solid, but also really patient," Kim said. "I didn't go for risks or chances, I just stayed patient."
Behind Kim, in second place at 4-under-par 68 is Sawyer Shaw of West Palm Beach, Fla. Michael Bernard of Huber Heights, Ohio, and Carter Page of Waynesville, N.C., are tied for third at 3-under-par 69, while William Zalatoris of Plano, Texas, sits in fifth at 2-under-par 70.
For the Girls Division, it was Jackson who went low, holding a one-shot lead over the field after carding 39-34 on the front and back nines respectively. While she said her drives kept her straight on the fairways, it was her putting that made the real difference heading into the back nine.
â€śI had trouble putting on the front, I was leaving everything short,â€ť Jackson said. â€śBut on the back nine I wad able to read them right and hit them right.â€ť
Giovana Maymon of Huixquilucan, Mexico is in second place after carding a 2-over-par 74. Rounding out the Girls Division in third place, at 3-over-par 75, is Rinko Mitsunaga of Roswell, Ga.
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, which is in its third decade of AJGA support, became the inaugural AJGA Premier Partner in 2004. In 2007, after 12 years of support, Polo Ralph Lauren became the AJGA's second Premier Partner.
AJGA alumni have risen to the top of amateur, collegiate and professional golf. More than 200 former AJGA juniors currently play on the PGA and LPGA Tours and have compiled more than 350 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.
The Gary Gilchrist Golf Academy Junior All-Star Series is a collection of 11 events specifically designed for boys and girls ages 12-15 and presents opportunities for younger members to develop their skills and earn entry into Open tournaments. Juniors are limited to a maximum combination of five AJGA Open and Junior All-Star Series events during a calendar year. The series concludes with the Junior All-Star Invitational over Columbus Day weekend for winners and top finishers in the Gary Gilchrist Golf Academy Junior All-Star Series events.
Gary Gilchrist Golf Academy, a full-time junior golf training and development program, enters its first year as an Official Partner of the AJGA. The partnership features an endowment of an Achieving Competitive Excellence (ACE) Grant and the naming rights to the Gary Gilchrist Golf Academy Junior All-Star Series, which will provide juniors access to national competitive golf opportunities.
Second round tee times will run from 7 a.m. â€” 12:20 p.m. off the No. 1 tee, Wednesday, June 10. For more information contact Tournament Director Andrew Greenfield at (770) 601-8922.