NIKE GOLF JUNIOR AT SOUTH PADRE ISLAND
South Padre Island Golf Club
South Padre Island, Texas
April 30-May 2, 2004
PARK LEADS GIRLS DIVISION AFTER FIRST ROUND AT SOUTH PADRE ISLAND
Uihlein and Campbell lead as weather interferes with first round in Boys Divisions
SOUTH PADRE ISLAND, Texas – So-Hyun Park of Bradenton, Fla. finished in front of the Girls Division after the first round of the Nike Golf Junior at South Padre Island at 5-over-par 77. The 15-year-old carded an even-par 36 on the front nine combined with a 5-over-par 41 on the back. The Boys Division was suspended due to darkness after a 3 hour and 13 minute rain delay earlier in the afternoon. Among the players completing the first round, Peter Uihlein of North Dartmouth, Mass., and Griffin Campbell of Marietta, Ga., are tied for the lead with even-par 72s.
The remainder of the Boys Division will complete the first round with a 7 a.m. shotgun start Sunday. The final round of the Girls and Boys Division will be a 9:30 a.m. shotgun start Sunday following the completion of the first round.
The Nike Golf Junior at South Padre Island is a 36-hole stroke play event conducted by the American Junior Golf Association at South Padre Island Golf Club. The tournament features 99 of the nation’s premier junior golfers, ages 12-15, from 21 states and Canada. This event is the first of nine regular-season events in the 2004 Nike Golf Junior All-Star Series.
Park shot even on the front nine with two birdies on Nos. 1 and 7 and back-to-back bogeys on Nos. 4 and 5. On the first hole she sank a short-putt for birdie and on the par-5 No. 7 she hit a sand wedge from 50 yards to the edge of the hole. The back nine gave Park some trouble with back-to-back bogeys on Nos. 12 and 13 and Nos. 16 and 17.
“I think I’m going to play better tomorrow,” Park said. “I just made some mistakes today that can be fixed.”
Three strokes off the lead, in second place with an 8-over-par 80 is Jennie Arseneault of Grinnel, Iowa. The 15-year-old had three birdies on Nos. 4, 9, and 17. Arseneault carded a 1-over-par 37 on the front nine, but increasing winds caused some difficulties for the junior on the back side as she carded a 7-over-par 43.
“I was hitting good shots, but the wind made every shot so tough,” Arseneault said. “I just couldn’t pick the right club.”
Caitlin Bliss of Katy, Texas, and Natalie Sheary of West Hartford, Conn., are tied for third place at 9-over-par 81.
In the Boys Division, Uihlein and Campbell share the lead. Uihlein carded a 37 on the front nine and 35 on the back. The 14-year-old collected three bogeys on the first nine holes, but was bogey-free on the back. He missed an eagle attempt on the par-5 No. 17 after hitting a driver and 6-iron to within six feet of the hole.
“The wind was grabbing balls today,” Uihlein said. “During the practice round I hit a 2-iron and wedge on No. 18, but today I hit a driver and 5-iron. That is a big difference.”
15-year-old Campbell carded a pair of even-par 36s on the front and back nine. He had a string of birdies on Nos. 7, 8, and 9. He also birdied No. 17 after hitting a driver and 2-iron to the front of the green. Campbell agreed the wind was a determining factor.
“I learned to play with the wind for the last twelve holes,” Campbell said. “I started making my putts.”
One stroke off the lead in third place at 1-over-par 73 is Steven Loer of Sarasota, Fla. In fourth place at 2-over-par 74 is Michael Im of La Habra, Calif. Tied for fifth place at 3-over-par 75 are Caleb Marsh of Strawberry Plains, Tenn., and James Byrd of Windermere, Fla.
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 has a 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.
For more information on the Nike Golf Junior at South Padre Island or any other AJGA event, contact the AJGA Tournament Headquarters at (956) 943-3622.