NIKE GOLF JUNIOR AT LAS CRUCES
Sonoma Ranch Golf Course
Las Cruces, N.M. • June 6 - 9
YUN STUNS FIELD WITH FINAL ROUND 67 TO CAPTURE GIRLS TITLE
LAS CRUCES, N.M. - 13-year-old Hannah Yun of Bradenton, Fla., shot a 5-under-par on the final day of the Nike Golf Junior at Las Cruces, to win the Girls Division by three strokes, shooting 78-76-67 - 221 for the tournament. Yun began the day in a four-way tie for fourth, three shots behind the leader. Louis Amira of Valencia, Calif., continued his strong play and shot his third straight round under par to win the Boys Division by an impressive eight strokes. Amira's final round 68 followed his personal best 9-under-par performance in the second round, leaving him at a final score of 15-under-par, 70-63-68 - 201.
The Nike Golf Junior at Las Cruces, conducted by the American Junior Golf Association, featured 66 boys and 18 girls — ages 12-15 — from 16 states and three foreign countries. The event was staged on the par-72, 6,717-yard Sonoma Ranch Golf Course (Girls Division played at 5,858 yards).
Yun started off the final round hot and never cooled off, completing the round with 11 pars, six birdies and only one bogey. Yun's thrilling round reached its peak when she chipped in on the 139-yard, par-3 11th from in front of the green for birdie, moving her to 4-under-par on the day. Finishing behind Yun was the first- and second-round leader Rachel Morris of Carlsbad, Calif., finishing second, with a tournament total of 224. Elisa Aoki of Nagoya-City, Japan, finished third at 225.
“After the front-nine, I felt really confident,” Yun said. “I told myself to hit fairways and greens, and you'll be fine.”
Yun was overwhelmed with emotion when it became clear she had indeed won. Yun, however did not let the win get to her head.
“This is just one tournament and every tournament is different. I just want to do my best and that's all that matters,” Yun said.
Amira took advantage of his six-stroke lead coming into the day and never looked back. After an even front-nine, Amira birdied three of the first five on the back nine to further distance himself from the pack. Finishing second was round one leader, Cory Whitsett of Houston, at 209. Rounding out the top five were Devin Miertschin of El Paso, Texas, at 215 in third, Jack Fields of Southern Pines, N.C., at 218, and four others tied for fifth at 219.
“It feels like all the hard work I've put in since I've joined the AJGA paid off,” Amira had to say when reflecting on his win.
Amira hopes to play a full slate of events this summer beginning next weekend in Las Vagas.
“I'm really excited I am playing in Vegas next weekend. This win gives me a lot of confidence I can go in there and compete for another win.”
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 enters its third decade of support, became the inaugural AJGA Premier Partner in 2004.
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 Phil Mickelson, Tiger Woods, Davis Love III, Mike Weir, Charles Howell III, Jim Furyk, Vicki Goetze-Ackerman, Grace Park, Cristie Kerr and Beth Bauer.
For more information about the Nike Junior Golf at Las Cruces, please call AJGA National Headquarters at (877) 373 - 2529.