PING JUNIOR AT MIRASOL
The Country Club at Mirasol – Sunrise Course
Palm Beach Gardens, Florida
June 1-4, 2004
PALM AND PARK TAKE TOP HONORS AT MIRASOL
PALM BEACH GARDENS, Fla. – David Palm of Jacksonville, Fla., couldn’t have written a better script for his first AJGA victory Friday, sinking a 10-foot par putt on No. 18 to win the Boys Division of the PING Junior at Mirasol. So-Hyun Park of Bradenton, Fla., fired a final-round 73 to take the girls title by two strokes with a tournament total of 219.
Conducted by the American Junior Golf Association, the 54-hole event is being held at The Country Club at Mirasol – Sunrise Course, home of the PGA TOUR’s Honda Classic, and features 84 boys and girls, ages 12-18, from 16 states. Highlighting the field are six Rolex Junior All-Americans, including Gin Kim of Wesley Chapel, Fla., Jon McLean of Weston, Fla., Toby Ragland of Jacksonville, Fla., Nicholas Smith of Ocala, Fla., Whitney Myers of East Berlin, Pa., and Christie Reed of Oak Ridge, Tenn.
Following an early-afternoon rain delay of over three hours, Palm battled high school teammate Toby Ragland, also of Jacksonville, Fla., and Jason Elliott of Palm Harbor, Fla., throughout the back nine, taking the lead with a birdie at No. 17 and knocking in the final putt for a 2-under-par 70 and tournament total of 212.
“I was just really nervous,” Palm said. “I couldn’t stop my hands from shaking. I just knew if I hit it where I wanted it would go in.”
The PING Junior at Mirasol was the third AJGA event for Palm, 16, who said the win exceeded his goals for the week. “I had been playing really well, but I didn’t expect to win,” he said. “I just wanted a top-20 finish and an exemption.”
Elliott and Andrew Freeman of Jensen Beach, Fla., finished in a tie for second-place with matching tournament totals of 213. Robert Riesen of Pinehurst, N.C., carded a 2-under-par 70 in the final round and finished fourth with a tournament total of 214. Ragland, a teammate of Palm’s at Bartram Trail High School, placed fifth with a tournament total of 215.
Park, who started the day tied for the Girls Division lead with Jessica Yadloczky of Cassleberry, Fla., shot a 1-under-par 35 on the front nine and coasted after the rain delay, making pars at Nos. 12, 13, 14 and 15 to take a five-stroke lead. Yadloczky came back with two pars at Nos. 16 and 17 and a birdie at No. 18, but Park’s lead proved insurmountable.
“I really didn’t think about the rain,” Park said. “I was just trying to make pars and play my game.”
The win at Mirasol was the second AJGA victory for Park, who won the Nike Golf Junior at South Padre Island in May.
Yadloczky and Whitney Myers of East Berlin, Pa., each shot tournament totals of 221 to finish in a tie for second place, and Christie Reed of Oak Ridge, Tenn., placed fourth with a tournament total of 223. Tiffany Chudy of Miramar, Fla., carded a tournament total of 224 to place fifth.
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 has a membership (boys and girls ages 12-18) of approximately 5,000 junior golfers from 50 states and 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, a supporter of the AJGA since 1983, became the inaugural AJGA Premier Partner in 2004.
For more information on the PING Junior at Mirasol or the AJGA, please call National Headquarters at (770) 868-4200 or visit ajga.org.
# AJGA #