RODGERS RAZES TOURNAMENT RECORD TO LEAD BOYS DIVISION IN AVON
Three girls tied for the lead at SAP Junior Open
AVON, Ohio. It is pretty hard to top a first-round score of 66, unless of course your name is Patrick Rodgers. The Avon, Ind., native improved even more from an incredible first round carding an 8-under-par 64 in Wednesday's second round. Those two rounds give Rodgers the new two-round tournament record at 14-under-par 130. In a three-way tie for first in the Girls Division are Elizabeth Breed of Waynesboro, Pa., Emma Talley of Princeton, Ky., and Devon Brown of Rancho Santa Fe, Calif., all at 3-over-par 147.
Conducted by the American Junior Golf Association, the SAP Junior Open is a 54-hole stroke play event held at Red Tail Golf Club in Avon, Ohio. The field features 90 boys and 30 girls, ages 12-18, from 19 states and Canada, Columbia and Indonesia. The par-72 course is played at 6,954 yards in the Boys Division and 6,151 yards in the Girls Division.
Rodgers' bogey-free round jumpstarted on No. 7 where he had his first of three straight birdies to finish his front nine and shoot a 4-under-par 32. Another string of birdies came on Nos. 13, 14 and 15 then again on No. 17 to shoot yet another 4-under-par 32.
I've been playing smart, putting the ball in good spots, and thinking my way around the course, Rodgers said.
It was just one of those days where you just have it. Every club in the bag was just working.
Tuesday's co-leader, Zachary Bates, of Chagrin Falls, Ohio, now sits 12 shots back at 2-under-par 142, after posting a 4-over-par 76 in Wednesday's second round. Cyril Suk of Bradenton, Fla., carded a 1-under-par 71 to put him in third place at 1-under-par 143. Columbus, Ohio, native Will Morris is sitting in fourth at even-par 144 after shooting 3-over-par 75. Both Zhong Yang Fu of Bradenton, Fla., and Korey Ward of West Chester, Ohio, are tied for the fifth spot at 1-over-par 145 after shooting rounds of 73 and 74, respectively.
Coming into the day tied for fifth after Tuesday's first round, Breed moved into a tie for the lead after she shot an even-par 72 in Wednesday's second round.
I missed a lot of putts today that should have been made, Breed said. I hit some pretty good wedges and if I can tighten those up then my putting will be fine.
Talley, a 2008 Rolex Junior All-American honorable mention, carded a 1-over-par 73 to move her ahead two spots from Tuesday's finish.
I hit the ball better today but I just couldn't putt and putting is where the game is won and lost, Talley said. Winning before Rolex Tournament of Champions next week would be great for my confidence but I need to work on short-distance putting.
The third player in the tie, Brown, shot a 3-over-par 75 to move her up one spot from finishing second after Tuesday's first round.
I definitely need to work on my short game for tomorrow in order to give myself birdie opportunities, Brown said. If I can keep my drives in the fairway and keep knocking my short irons in there close I think I can get under par.
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 50 states and 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 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 SAP Junior Open will run from 7:30 9:20 a.m. off the Nos. 1 and 10 tees Thursday, June 25. For more information contact Tournament Headquarters at 678-617-9917.
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