FRANSTED EARNS MEDALIST HONORS WITH 2-UNDER-PAR 70
Lovette medals in Girls Division at soggy Srixon Qualifier
HERMITAGE, Pa. — Joe Fransted of Novi, Mich., carded a 2-under-par 70, the only sub-par round of the day, to take medalist honors in the Boys Division at the Srixon Qualifier for the Smithfield Junior Championship. Caroline Lovette of Davidsville, Pa., recorded a 4-over-par 76 to earn medalist honors in the Girls Division.
Conducted by the AJGA, the Srixon Qualifier for the Smithfield Junior Championship was an 18-hole stroke play, shotgun start event held at Tam O' Shanter Golf Course. The 97-player field featured players from 12 states and Canada. The Girls Division played the event at 5,767 yards, while the Boys Division played at 6,387 yards.
Fransted opened his round with a pair of birdies, and at one point was 4-under-par despite the rainy and cool conditions. He said nerves eventually set in, but was proud of the way he contained himself and stayed within his game.
“I felt the pressure towards the end, but I didn't let it slip,” Fransted said. “I got off to a good start and kept it up through the rain.”
In all, 10 boys qualified for this week's Smithfield Junior Championship. Also qualifying for this week's Boys Division field were Sebastian Szirmak of Toronto, Ontario, AJ Cohen of Pittsburgh, Pa., Tyler Light of Massillon, Ohio, Brandon Rukin of Pepper Pike, Ohio, Michael Klaric III of Hermitage, Pa., Alex Pompey of Clarks Summit, Pa., Sean Sweithelm of Indiana, Pa., Joshua Koch of Medina, Ohio, and Jack Shoreman of Orangeville, Ontario.
Original qualifiers who opted to take one Tournament Exemption in lieu of playing in this week's event were Devin O'Grady of Lancaster, Pa., Eric Poplowski of Freedom, Pa., Matthew Burkhart of Lancaster, Pa., Mark Endres of Bryn Mawr, Pa., and Joshua Eure of Crofton, Md.
During the worst of the day's rain, Lovette grinded out nine straight pars to secure medalist honors in the Girls Division. In her second Srixon Qualifier, Lovette said she applied what she learned from her first qualifier to Sunday's performance.
“I learned that I'm my own worst enemy sometimes and that I can't get intimidated,” said Lovette, who opted to take one Tournament Exemption in lieu of playing in this week's event. “The girls that play on the AJGA are the best, but I can play with them, too.”
Also qualifying to play in the Smithfield Junior Championship in the Girls Division were Eunae Jo of Ridgewood, N.J., and Suzie Lee of E. Northport, N.Y.
In addition to Lovette, Alice Choi of Whitestone, N.Y., also opted to take one Tournament Exemption in lieu of playing in this week's event.
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 an annual junior membership (boys and girls ages 12-18) of more than 5,000 junior golfers from 49 states and more than 25 countries.
SRIXON Sports USA, Inc., based in Lawrenceville, Ga., has been distributing premium golf balls and equipment in the U.S. since 1997 and is a subsidiary of SRI Sports Limited. SRI Sports Limited is the number one golf club manufacturer in the world's second largest market, Japan, and is one of the world's leading patent holders in golf ball technology. SRIXON golf balls earned 26 tournament victories on multiple professional tours around the world in 2006.
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 Tiger Woods, Phil Mickelson, Jim Furyk, Stewart Cink, Davis Love III, Cristie Kerr, Pat Hurst, Paula Creamer, Brittany Lincicome, Morgan Pressel and Julieta Granada.
First-round tee times for the Smithfield Junior Championship will begin at 7:30 a.m. Tuesday off the No. 1 tee at New Castle Country Club. For more information, please contact tournament headquarters at (724) 654-6689.