GRILLI SHOOTS PERSONAL BEST SCORE OF 67; LEADS AFTER TWO ROUNDS
Yun, Hendrickson tied for first in Boys Division, 6-under-par 138
CROWN POINT, Ind. — Michelle Grilli of Lutherville, Md., made a 10-foot-putt off the fringe of the green on her last hole to take the lead in the Girls Division of Indiana's Chicago Junior Open. Her second-round score of 67 was a personal low. Added to her first-round score of 73, Grilli will start the final round at 4-under-par 140. Andrew Yun of Tacoma, Wash., and Charlie Hendrickson of Columbus, Ohio, are co-leaders in the Boys Division at 6-under-par 138.
Conducted by the American Junior Golf Association, Indiana's Chicago Junior Open is being held at the White Hawk Country Club — Red Hawk & Black Hawk Courses. Eighty-four junior golfers from 18 states, including 11 from Indiana, are competing in the 54-hole stroke play event.
Grilli said, coming into the tournament, she knew she needed to make a lot of birdies. She ended the day with six on Nos. 1, 3, 9, 13, 15 and 16. She said making a lot of putts and staying consistent with her driver allowed her to perform well.
“I knew this was the type of course I could go low on,” she said. “On the short par-4s, if you have a good drive, it's an easy wedge or short iron to the green.”
In second place with a 2-over-par 146 is Jennifer Hong of Windermere, Fla., and in third place with a 147 is Natalie Sheary of West Hartford, Conn.
In the Boys Division, Yun, who started on No. 10, had three bogeys on his first nine holes, but said he was able to “refresh” himself during the turn to shoot a 32 on the Red Hawk Course and end the day with a 2-under-par 70.
“I asked God to help me calm down and focus. Everything changed: my swing changed, my putting changed — I just let it go,” he said. “Tomorrow, I'm going to try not to think about anything and play my own game.”
After finishing tied for 44th last week at the AJGA Andover Open in Lexington, Ky., Hendrickson said he's been playing more confidently this week. He said posting a birdie on the first hole of the Black Hawk Course jump-started his second round. He ended the round with four birdies and one bogey.
“I have confidence right now,” he said. “I feel I can hit the right shots. When things go well and you play smart, you get good breaks.”
Tied for third place with 4-under-par 140s are John Chin of Temecula, Calif., Erich Johnston of Fort Wayne, Ind., and Peter O'Neill of Carmel, Ind. Scoring 142s and tied for fifth place are Brendan Gielow of Muskegon, Mich., Fletcher Coonan of Maitland, Fla., Alex Resurreccion of Long Beach, Calif., and Ravi Patel of Naperville, Ill.
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 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, a supporter of the AJGA since 1983, 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, Dottie Pepper, Grace Park, Cristie Kerr and Beth Bauer.
Tee times for the final round of Indiana's Chicago Junior Open will begin Friday, July 8, at 7 a.m. Girls will start on the No. 1 tee from 7 — 7:54 a.m. followed by the leader boys at 8:03 — 8:57 a.m. The remaining boys' groups will start on the No. 10 tee from 7 — 8:57 a.m.
For more information about Indiana's Chicago Junior Open, call tournament headquarters at (219) 661-2323.