PRATT GOES LOW AGAIN, CARDS 4-UNDER-PAR 68 TO TAKE LEAD AT STEELWOOD
Agnello on top in Girls Division with even-par 72 in second round
LOXLEY, Ala. — On a day that saw bookend rain delays, it was Conner Pratt of Birmingham, Ala., who came out high and dry, carding a 4-under-par 68 Wednesday en route to a two-day total of 9-under-par 135 heading into the final round of the AJGA Junior at Steelwood presented by AT&T. For the Girls Division, Nicole Agnello of Longwood, Fla., continued her steady play, firing a second-round 72 to lead the field at 1-over-par 145 going into Thursday's final round.
Conducted by the American Junior Golf Association, the AJGA Junior at Steelwood presented by AT&T is a 54-hole stroke play event being held at Steelwood Country Club. The tournament field consists of 60 boys and 17 girls, ages 14 to 18, from nine states and Canada. The Boys Division is playing the par-72 layout at 7,004 yards, while the Girls Division is playing the course at 6,052 yards.
Pratt, who came into the round one shot behind in second place, carded 1-under-par 35 on the front side before catching fire on the back with four birdies to one bogey. With a two-round total of 13 birdies, Pratt sits three shots ahead of the field, due in large part, he said, to compatible course conditions.
“This course plays perfect when it comes to my regular ball flight,” Pratt said. “All I have to do tomorrow is come out focused and swing the same as I have the past two days, and I think I have a chance to win.”
Landon Lyons of Baton Rouge, La., lies in second place after carding an even-par 72 for a two-day total of 6-under-par 138. Chad Bounds of Meridian, Miss., is in third place at 5-under-par 139. Stewart Jolly of Birmingham, Ala., is in fourth place at 2-under-par 142, while the following players are tied for fifth place at even-par 144: Trey Mullinax of Mount Olive, Ga., Tom Lovelady of Birmingham, Ala., Chad Ramey of Fulton, Miss., and Paul McClure of Mobile, Ala.
In the Girls Division, it was the second solid day for Agnello who bested her first-round 73 by carding 35-37 on the front and back nines, respectively, to end with a second-round total of 145. While her score improved, Agnello believed her luck on putting left something to be desired.
“I was driving it right down the fairways and hitting my greens but then I couldn't get the putts to fall,” Agnello said. “It seemed to come down to one inch here or there on a lot of the holes, it's just sometimes they fall and sometimes they don't.”
Behind Agnello, in second place, lies Sandra Lee of Carrollton, Texas, at 5-over-par 149, after carding a second-round 75. Currently tied for third place are A.J. Newell of Tampa, Fla., and Caroline Beebe of nearby Daphne, Ala., at 6-over-par 150.
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 50 states and more than 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 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 200 former AJGA juniors currently play on the PGA and LPGA Tours and have compiled more than 350 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.
Final-round tee times for the AJGA Junior at Steelwood presented by AT&T will run from 8:30 - 10:18 a.m. off the Nos. 1 and 10 tees at Steelwood Country Club. For more information, please contact Tournament Headquarters at (251) 964-8813.