KIM AND LOPEZ SHOOT EVEN PAR TO SHARE MEDALIST HONORS IN SAN RAMON
Peterson cards 73 for first place in Boys Division
San Ramon, Calif.. — Adam Peterson of Canby, Ore., shot a 1-over-par 73 to take Boys Division medalist honors at Thursday's Srixon Qualifier for the Fidelity Investments Junior Open. In the Girls Division, Joy Kim of Pinole, Calif., and Lee Lopez of Whittier, Calif., fired even-par 72s to share medalist honors.
Conducted by the American Junior Golf Association, the Fidelity Investments Junior Open is a 54-hole stroke play event being held at The Bridges Golf Club. The Srixon Qualifier featured 80 boys and 18 girls, ages 12-18, from nine states and Canada.
Peterson's 73 featured a 36 on the front side and a 37 on the back nine with three birdies. The 17-year-old felt the key to his solid round was consistently hitting fairways and greens on the narrow course.
“I hit a lot more fairways than I expected to, and that helped keep my score low,” Peterson said. “I'm going to try to do the same for the rest of the tournament.”
Even when Peterson made mistakes off the tee, the other parts of his game were working. On the par-4 ninth hole, he hit a poor drive into the rough, which left him 180 yards from the green. Despite a difficult downhill lie, Peterson nailed his approach shot to a foot from the flagstick and tapped in for birdie. This is the first time Peterson has qualified for an AJGA event.
Also qualifying were John Lim of Torrance, Calif., John Sanjuan of Garden Grove, Calif., Luke Scott of Reno, Nev., Boz Bascou of Woodbridge, Calif., Bradley Wyatt of La Verne, Calif., Robbie Ziegler of Canby, Ore., Christopher Lee of Los Angeles, Andrew Slusser of Newport Coast, Calif., Jeffrey Hamm of Danville, Calif., Christopher Mathews of Bloomfield Hills, Mich., and Justin Lee of Tarzana, Calif. Thomas Camaione of Upland, Calif., Hyun Seok Lim of Fullerton, Calif., Jeffrey Kang of Los Angeles, John Moon of Cerritos, Calif., and Skyler Hong of San Diego also qualified but opted to take an AJGA Tournament Exemption in lieu of playing in this week's event.
In the Girls Division, Kim was pleased with her consistent round of even par, which featured a 34 on the front nine and a 38 on the back side. Kim felt that her entire game was working well, and she concentrated on hitting the tight fairways and avoiding trouble spots.
“I was just trying to hit good shots and not worry too much,” Kim said. “I felt really good out there and I'm excited to play this weekend.”
The highlight of Kim's round came on the par-4 second hole, where she hit a solid tee shot and hit her approach 20 feet from the flagstick. She made the putt for birdie, which got her momentum going for the rest of the round.
Lopez got off to a solid start on the par-4 No. 16, her first hole of the day. She put her drive in the fairway and hit a solid approach to ten feet from the flagstick. Lopez nailed the putt for birdie, her first of the day, which gave her a boost of confidence for the rest of the day.
“Starting off with a birdie helped a lot,” Lopez said. “It gave me a cushion and helped me believe I could handle the course.”
Lopez's 72 consisted of a 35 on the front nine and a 37 on the back side with two birdies and 15 pars. The 16-year-old felt the key to her steady play was her accurate tee shots and strong short game, which helped save par on several holes.
Stephanie Arcala of Oceanside, Calif., qualified with an 8-over-par 80. Robin Lee of Camarillo, Calif., and Christina Hirano of Pinole, Calif., also qualified but opted to take an AJGA Tournament Exemption in lieu of playing in this week's event.
SRIXON Sports USA, Inc., based in Norcross, Ga., has been distributing premium golf balls and equipment in the U.S. since 1997 and is a subsidiary of SRI Sports. SRI Sports is one of the world's leading patent holders in golf ball technology and manufactures several golf balls played in the United States. SRI Sports-made balls have won 73 PGA TOUR events since 1989, including seven majors. For more information about SRIXON, please visit www.srixon.com.
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 200 former AJGA juniors currently play on the PGA and LPGA Tours and have compiled more than 280 wins. AJGA alumni include Phil Mickelson, Tiger Woods, Davis Love III, Mike Weir, Charles Howell III, Jim Furyk, Dottie Pepper, Grace Park, Cristie Kerr, Beth Bauer and Paula Creamer.
First-round tee times will begin at 7 a.m. off the Nos. 1 and 10 tees on Saturday. For more information about the Fidelity Investments Junior Open, contact tournament headquarters at (925) 735-4235.