UCLA SIGNEES SHARE LEAD AT 5-UNDER-PAR AT COTO DE CAZA
Lua and Rah atop the Girls Division after one round of play
COTO DE CAZA, Calif. — UCLA-bound players James Lee of La Habra, Calif., and Lucas Lee of Torrance, Calif., went low on Wednesday to secure the lead after the first round of the Family Toyota/Family Honda Junior presented by The First American Corporation. Both carded a 5-under-par 67 Wednesday to put them one stroke ahead of the field. In the Girls Division, Tiffany Lua of Rowland Heights, Calif., and Jane Rah of Torrance, Calif., are tied after 18 holes. After shooting 3-under-par 69s, they sit two strokes ahead of the pack.
Conducted by the American Junior Golf Association, the second annual Family Toyota/Family Honda Junior presented by The First American Corporation is being held at Coto de Caza Golf and Racquet Club — South Course. Ninety-nine junior golfers, ages 12-18, are participating in the 54-hole stroke play event. Five states are represented in the tournament field, with 95 junior golfers from California competing.
In the Boys Division, the two 18-year-olds showed their goods on the back nine. After playing the front nine a combined even-par, the two went a combined 8-under-par on the last four holes.
Lucas Lee has been trying to improve his work with his putter and it paid off on Wednesday. He carded three birdies and an eagle to finish out his day.
“After missing the cut at the Western Junior, I really got serious,” he said. “I have been practicing a lot, especially my putting, so I was glad it helped today.”
After winning the tournament here last year, James Lee is looking forward to another exciting week at Coto de Caza. This will be his last event as a junior and hopes to make the most of it.
“I don't feel any pressure at this point,” he said. “I just want to be able to enjoy everything until the last day.”
The boys will have to keep their eyes on the rest of the field, which sits only one stroke back. In third place are Dustin Rhone of Culver City, Calif., and Kevin Lim of Las Vegas. Rounding out the top-5 in the Boys Division is Jason Kang of Valencia, Calif., with a 69.
In the Girls Division, Lua played a steady round to earn a top position after the first day of play. Lua got her round off to a good start with a birdie on the par-4 No. 1. She went on to finish the front nine at 2-under with three birdies and just one bogey. The back nine proved to be just as steady for the 14-year-old, as she carded two birdies and one bogey.
“It was fun out there because we were firing at a lot of flags,” said Lua. “Tomorrow, my goal is continue to hit a lot of fairways and greens.”
Coming off a solid week at the Canon Cup and a second place finish at the Rolex Tournament of Champions, Rah is looking for her first AJGA victory this week at Coto de Caza. She hopes that her round today, which included four birdies and one bogey, will help set her up for success.
“I'm hoping that I can come out on top this week,” Rah stated. “I would like to stop getting all these second-place finishes.”
Sitting alone in third place is Mindy Kim of Diamond Bar, Calif., whose 1-under-par 71 sets her only two-strokes off the lead.
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.
Second-round tee times begin Thursday at 7:30 a.m. off the No. 1 tee at Coto de Caza Golf and Racquet Club — South Course. For more information about the Family Toyota/Family Honda Junior presented by The First American Corporation, contact tournament headquarters at (949) 858-3016.