GOOCH TAKES THREE-STROKE LEAD AT ALDILA JUNIOR AT OAK TREE
Montoya shoots even-par to sit atop Girls Division
EDMOND, Okla. — Talor Gooch of Midwest City, Okla., posted a two-day total of 1-under-par 139 to claim the lead after the second round of the Aldila Junior at Oak Tree. Mariah Montoya of Lubbock, Texas, posted an even-par 140 to hold the top spot in the Girls Division at Oak Tree Country Club Wednesday.
Conducted by the American Junior Golf Association, the Aldila Junior at Oak Tree is a 54-hole stroke play event being held at Oak Tree Country Club — East Course. The tournament field features 102 boys and 42 girls, ages 12-18, from 13 states and Brazil. The Boys Division is playing the par-70 course at 7,014 yards, while the Girls Division is playing the course at 5,783 yards.
After multiple weather delays and playing a demanding 27-plus holes Wednesday, Gooch carded four birdies during the second round. He attributes his success to staying focused throughout the day.
“I drove the ball well and had little trouble off the tee box,” Gooch said. “I didn't make many mistakes and played a solid round, two rounds I guess.”
Tied for second are Logan McCracken of Oklahoma City and Geoffrey Shaw of Edmond, Okla., both at 2-over-par 142. Andrew Green of Edmond, Okla., sits in fourth at 3-over-par 143 followed by Colton Staggs of Tulsa, Okla., in fifth place at 4-over-par 144.
Montoya entered the second round tied for the lead and stuck to her game plan of taking one shot at a time. A strong start on the front nine set the tone for her round and helped Montoya to a four-stroke lead.
“I started at 2-under-par, got to No. 6 and put it in the back bunker,” Montoya said. “It was a difficult up and down but I got it. It was a great way to start out.”
Devon Brown of Rancho Santa Fe, Calif., and Emma Lavy of Fayetteville, Ark., are tied for second place at 4-over-par 144.
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 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 is in its third decade of AJGA support, became the inaugural AJGA Premier Partner in 2004. In 2007, after 12 years of support, Polo Ralph Lauren became the AJGA's second Premier Partner.
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.
The final round of the Aldila Junior at Oak Tree is Thursday, June 1, with tee times running off the Nos. 1 and 10 tees from 7:30 — 9:18 a.m. For more information about the Aldila Junior at Oak Tree, please contact Tournament Headquarters at (678) 936-0163.