WHITSETT MAINTAINS LEAD HEADING INTO FINAL ROUND AT THE PING INVITATIONAL
Tanco emerges as second-round leader at Karsten Creek Golf Club
STILLWATER, Okla. — Consistency was the key to another successful round at Karsten Creek Golf Club for Houston native Cory Whitsett, who expanded his first-round lead to three shots. Victoria Tanco of Buenos Aires, Argentina, took the reins in the Girls Division to lead by one.
Conducted by the American Junior Golf Association, The PING Invitational is a 54-hole stroke play event being held at Karsten Creek Golf Club. The 78-player field features players from 21 states, Argentina, Colombia, Denmark, Mexico and South Korea. The Boys Division is playing Karsten Creek Golf Club at 7,285 yards, while the Girls Division is playing at 6,273 yards.
Playing conservatively with his shots on the difficult and testing golf course, Whitsett was able to hold off the competition and take the lead heading into Monday's final round. Carding seven pars on the front side with two bogeys, Whitsett said the shots were there, but just didn't seem to fall after ending with a 4-over-par 76 for the day.
“It was a hard day and I stuck the ball really well. I just didn't give myself the opportunities I did yesterday,” Whitsett said. “All in all it was a good day.”
Making the turn at 2-over-par, Whitsett stuck with his conservative game plan. Matching his front side, Whitsett carded seven pars and two bogeys. Heading into the final round Whitsett says consistency and patience is his focus.
“I'm just going to take it one shot at a time. It's all you can do especially on this course. If you get ahead of yourself you can shoot a lot fast.”
Teeing it up with Whitsett in the final pairing Monday will be Cheng-Tsung Pan of Upland, Calif., who sits alone in second place with a 4-over-par 148. Rounding out the pairing will be Jordan Spieth of Dallas, who sits fours shots behind with a 5-over-par 149. Anthony Paolucci is in fourth place with a 6-over-par 150. Tied for fifth are Byeong-hun An of Bradenton, Fla., Mario Clemens of Beverly Hills, Calif., Jacob Everts of Ooltewah, Tenn., Jeffrey Kang of Fullerton, Calif,, and Andrew Yun of Tacoma, Wash., all at 9-over-par 153.
In the Girls Division, Tanco is atop the leaderboard after climbing from 10th place. Carding three birdies and 12 pars on the day, Tanco was able to come back strong and head into Monday's final round one stroke ahead of competition. Making a birdie early on the back side propelled Tanco ahead of her competitors.
“I played really good. On the back nine I made a birdie and was three under,” said Tanco. “Then I made three bogeys in a row and that was the rough part of the day when I finished at even par.”
Tied for second are Stacey Kim of Columbus, Ga., Rachel Morris of Carlsbad, Calif., and Alexis Thompson of Coral Springs, Fla., all at 8-over-par 152.
This week's tournament title partner, PING, designs, manufactures and markets a complete line of golf equipment including metal woods, irons, putters and golf bags. The family-owned company was founded in 1959 by the late Karsten Solheim. Solheim is the only person to be inducted into the World Golf Hall of Fame as a golf club manufacturer. Today, the Phoenix-based company is under the direction of Solheim's youngest son, John A. Solheim. PING game-improvement products can be found in more than 70 countries. For more information, visit www.pinggolf.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 an annual junior membership (boys and girls ages 12-18) of approximately 5,000 junior golfers from 49 states and 25 foreign countries.
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 and Morgan Pressel.
Final-round tee times for The PING Invitational will run from 7:30 — 9:30 a.m. off the Nos. 1 and 10 tees at Karsten Creek Golf Club. For more information on The PING Invitational, please contact Tournament Headquarters at (405) 533-2883.