Donohue, Talley Hold Off Competitors in the Final Round of the AJGA Junior at Quad Cities
Donohue earns first AJGA victory while Talley picks up number seven at Short Hills Country Club
East Moline, Ill. — Despite participating in just his second AJGA event, 15-year-old Max Donohue of Sioux Falls, S.D., captured the Boys Division Championship Friday as he finished at 3-under-par 213 to pace the field at the AJGA Junior at Quad Cities. In the Girls Division, earning her seventh AJGA championship, was Emma Talley of Princeton, Ky., who finished at 6-over-par 222 en route to victory.
The AJGA Junior at Quad Cities was a 54-hole stroke play event conducted by the American Junior Golf Association at Short Hills Country Club in East Moline, Ill. The tournament field included 75 boys and 21 girls, ages 12-18 from 18 states and Thailand. The Boys Division played the par-72 course at 6,694 yards and the Girls Division played at 6,123 yards.
Donohue fired a final round 1-over-par 73 as he was able to hold on to the two-stroke lead he had accumulated after the event's first two rounds. A 2014 graduate, Donohue was able to maintain his lead as he put together a solid final round in which he finished three strokes ahead of his nearest competitor.
“I felt very good about my chances after the short par-4, No. 15 (269 yards),” Donohue said. “I made a birdie on that hole and I felt very confident about my round after that.”
Donohue, who will begin his sophomore year this fall, understands the importance of the win and what it means for his future.
“It feels good to get a win when you are younger and you know that you're starting to make good things happen,” Donohue said. “Knowing that I can play and compete with the older kids is definitely a good feeling.”
Finishing in second place was Jacob Fair of Monett, Mo., who fired a final-round 2-under-par 70 to finish the tournament at even-par 216. Earning third-place was Rylee Reinertson of Gibbon, Neb., who put together back-to-back, 2-under-par 70's before scoring a final round 5-over-par 77, leaving him four-strokes off the leader's pace. In fourth was Voramate Aussarassakorn of Bangkok, Thailand, who finished the tournament at 4-over-par 220. Jake Marriott of Springfield, Ill., Dane Worley of Cedar Rapids, Iowa, and Tyler Williams of Hilton Head Island, S.C., finished tied for fifth with a 6-over-par 222.
In the Girls Division, Talley earned her seventh AJGA championship as she fired a final round 4-over-par 76 to finish the event two strokes ahead of the field at 6-over-par 222.
“I knew I was in a good position to earn the championship after the first couple of holes on the back nine,” Talley said. “I was able to score a couple of birdies on my second nine before I double-bogeyed the final hole. Overall I didn't play as good as I wanted to this week, but to be able to pull out the victory makes me very happy.”
Talley will look to continue her winning ways next week as she travels to Ashland, Ky., to compete in the Natural Resources Partners Bluegrass Junior where she is the reigning champion.
“Prior to next week I'm going to continue to work on hitting my driver,” Talley said. “I know my next course really well and I feel that if I can improve my drives and putting that I will have a good chance of repeating my win there from last year.”
Finishing second in the Girls Division was Maggie Chio of Bradenton, Fla., who finished two strokes behind Talley with an 8-over-par 224. Finishing third place was Lauren English of Bloomington, Ill., who finished the tournament at 13-over-par 229.
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 provides valuable exposure for college golf scholarships, and has an annual junior membership (boys and girls ages 12-18) of approximately 5,000 junior golfers from 49 states and more than 40 countries. To ensure scholarship opportunities for all junior golfers who have the skill, the AJGA created the Achieving Competitive Excellence (ACE) Grant program to provide financial assistance to young players in need.
Titleist, the AJGA's National Sponsor, has been the catalyst and driving force behind the Association's success since 1989. Rolex, 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. Former AJGA juniors have compiled more than 500 victories on the PGA and LPGA Tours. AJGA alumni include Stewart Cink, Matt Kuchar, Hunter Mahan, Phil Mickelson, Tiger Woods, Paula Creamer, Cristie Kerr, Inbee Park and Morgan Pressel.
For more information on the AJGA Junior at Quad Cities contact National Headquarters at (770) 868-4200.