SKURLA TAKES CONTROL AT MIDWEST JUNIOR PLAYERS CHAMPIONSHIP
Ramsey maintains tempo in Girls Division at Hilton Indian Lakes Resort - Blackhawk Trace
BLOOMINGDALE, Ill. — Steve Skurla, 17, of Wheaton, Ill., rocketed in to the lead Wednesday after firing a second-round 6-under-par 66. Ashlan Ramsey, 13, of Augusta, Ga., held on to the first-round lead in the Girls Division after carding a two-day total even-par 144.
Conducted by the American Junior Golf Association, the Midwest Junior Players Championship is a 54-hole stroke play event being held at Hilton Indian Lakes Resort — Blackhawk Trace. The tournament field consists of 108 Boys and 36 Girls, ages 12-18, from 20 states and three foreign countries. The par-72 course is being played at 6,928 yards for the Boys Division and 6,085 yards for the Girls Division.
Skurla, who was able to gain entry to the event through the K12 qualifier Sunday, stands at 8-under-par 136 through two days. Skurla started the day by making eagle on the par-5 499 yard No. 2 and birdie on the par-5 573 yard No. 6. Skurla caught fire on the back nine shooting 5-under-par 31, sinking four consecutive birdies on Nos. 13, 14, 15 and 16 to go along with birdies on Nos. 11 and 18.
“My irons were working really well for me today,” Skurla said. “I hit my 5-iron on No. 13 within a couple of feet of the hole and everything just started to snowball from there.”
Ryan Murphy of Champaign, Ill., and Ross Frankenberg of Barrington, Ill., enter the final round in a tie for second place after posting two-day scores of 4-under-par 140. Cyril Suk of Bradenton, Fla., and Sam Jandel of Dayton, Ohio, round out the Boys Division in a tie for fourth with two-day scores of 2-under-par 142.
Ramsey was able to hit her irons strong to help maintain her lead by three strokes after a second round 2-over-par 74. Ramsey birdied No. 17 after a slow start on her first nine and then finished her round by hitting for birdie on No. 9.
“Hitting birdie on my last hole was the best moment of the day for me,” Ramsey said. “I'm just trying to shoot low and keep it together for the final round.”
Tanaporn Kongkiatkrai of Bradenton, Fla., stands in second with a 3-over-par 147. Tied for third are Kaira Martin of Paradise Valley, Ariz., and Kris Yoo of Schaumburg, Ill., with two-day totals of 4-over-par 148.
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 an annual junior membership (boys and girls ages 12-18) of more than 5,000 junior golfers from 50 states and more than 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.
Final-round tee times for the Midwest Junior Players Championship will run from 7-8:33 a.m., off the Nos. 1 and 10 tees Thursday, June 11 at Hilton Indian Lakes Resort — Blackhawk Trace. For more information about the Midwest Junior Players Championship, please contact Tournament Headquarters at (630) 529-0200 ext. 6887.