RODGERS' RIVETING PERFORMANCE EARNS HIM TROPHY AT SAP JUNIOR OPEN
Talley's final-round breakaway gives her a victory in the Girls Division at Red Tail Golf Club
AVON, Ohio â€” After winning the SAP Junior Open by a margin of 12 strokes, Patrick Rodgers of Avon, Ind., had a lot to be excited about heading into next week's Rolex Tournament of Champions. With his birthday coming up next week, everything seems to be going right for Rodgers as he carded a 1-under-par 71, winning with a score of 15-under-par 201 in Thursday's final round. In the Girls Division, Emma Talley of Princeton, Ky., carded the lowest girls round of the tournament at 4-under-par 68.
Conducted by the American Junior Golf Association, the SAP Junior Open was a 54-hole stroke play event held at Red Tail Golf Club in Avon, Ohio. The field featured 90 boys and 30 girls, ages 12-18, from 19 states, Canada, Columbia and Indonesia. The par-72 course was played at 6,954 yards in the Boys Division and 6,151 yards in the Girls Division.
Rodgers started the day off well playing his first seven holes at 2-under-par but struggled in the middle of the round only to come back and birdie Nos. 13 and 15. Rodgers stayed consistent and held his 12-shot lead from yesterday's round and was able to fend off the rest of the field.
â€śI hit the ball well all week and I really just thought my way around this course, I think that is one of my advantages,â€ť Rodgers said. â€śWinning here means a lot. It means my game is solid and ready for Rolex Tournament of Champions so I have a lot of confidence going in there.â€ť
Finishing behind Rodgers at 3-under-par 213 was Cyril Suk of Bradenton, Fla., who carded a final round score of 2-under-par 70. First-round co-leader Zachary Bates of Chagrin Falls, Ohio, posted a 1-over-par in the final round to leave him in third at 1-over-par 215. Hilliard, Ohio, native Matt Renner shot a 1-under-par 71 to give him a fourth place finish at 3-over-par 217. In a three-way tie for fifth place was Abdul Sihag of Bradenton, Fla., David Tepe of Liberty Township, Ohio, and Beau Titsworth of Avon, Ohio, who all finished at 6-over-par 220.
Talley, who came into Thursday's round in a three-way tie for the lead, played her first five holes of the day at 4-under-par. This 2008 honorable mention Rolex Junior All-American had a winning total of 1-under-par 215 will propel her into next week's Rolex Tournament of Champions.
â€śI lost a little concentration on No. 16 when I three-putted, but I learned that you need to focus on the present and not your competitors and to just play the course,â€ť Talley said. â€śIt feels really good to win at one of my favorite courses and to win heading into next week.â€ť
Rounding out the Girls Division in second was Devon Brown of Rancho Santa Fe, Calif., who posted an even-par 72 Thursday and a three-day total of 3-over-par 219. In a tie for third were Michelle Lee of Mississauga, Ontario and Elizabeth Breed of Waynesboro, Pa., who both finished at 6-over-par 222.
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 25 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.
For more information about the SAP Junior Open contact AJGA National Headquarters at 770-868-4200.
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