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NIKE GOLF JUNIOR AT LEE COUNTY
Miromar Lakes Beach & Golf Club
Fort Myers, Florida
July 19-22, 2004
 
COLE CHARGES TO FIVE SHOT LEAD HEADING INTO FINAL ROUND
Wenglasz and Detlefsen lead Girls Division
 

FORT MYERS, Fla. – Fifteen-year-old Spencer Cole of Greer, S.C., holds a 5-shot lead after finishing his 36-hole day at 10-under-par 134 in the Nike Golf Junior at Lee County.  Sharing the lead in the Girls Division is Kathryn Detlefsen of Eagan, Minn., and Whitney Wenglasz of Oldsmar, Fla., each carding a 6-over-par 150 entering the final round.

Conducted by the American Junior Golf Association, the Nike Golf Junior at Lee County features 80 players, 66 boys and 14 girls, ages 12-15 from 20 states and four countries.  The 54-hole stroke play event is in its first year at the Miromar Lakes Golf & Beach Club.

In order to make up for the postponement of Tuesday’s first round due to heavy rains, players completed two 18-hole shotgun rounds on Wednesday.  During his stellar first round, Cole hit 12 fairways, 12 greens and needed only 24 putts to set the Miromar Lakes Beach & Golf Club’s course record, a 7-under-par 65.  Cole continued his impressive play during the afternoon round, carding a 33-36—69 to end the day at 10-under-par.

“Playing 36 holes in one day is really hard because you have to stay focused the entire time,” Cole said.  “I came out on top because I feel like I was the person that was able to manage my game the best and stay concentrated throughout both rounds—not because I was the best player.”

Cole said he avoided big mistakes en route to making birdie on Nos. 4, 15, 16, 17, and 18 during both rounds.

Trailing Cole by five strokes is Gregor Slabe of Bradenton, Fla., who totaled a 5-under-par 139 on the day.  Also on the leaderboard is Aaron Sherry of Fort Myers, Fla. at 140, Jay Vandeventer of Bristol, Va. at 142, and Daniel Brown of Memphis, Tenn., and Johnny DelPrete of Palm City, Fla. tied at 143.

In the Girls Division, Detlefsen and Wenglasz share the lead coming out of the second round.  Carding a 75-75—150, Wenglasz has learned how to use her strengths in a tournament setting despite her young age.

“I have a strong drive and I can really get the distance compared to most girls my age,” the 13-year-old Wenglasz said.  “I’ve also been able to develop a lot of confidence in my chipping and pitching because I spend so much time practicing them both.  They really allowed me to get up and down to set up short putts.”

Detlefsen used the back-to-back rounds to her advantage by getting right back in and making the changes she needed after the first round.  The strategy worked as her second-round score of 34-37—71 was the low Girls Division round of the day.

“I obviously like where I am right now.  I’d always rather be tied than chasing the lead though,” the 15-year-old Detlefsen said. “I know that I can’t control the other player, so I have to play my own game and play it well.  If I put out my best effort tomorrow and get beat, I can never feel bad about the round.”

Courtney Ellenbogen, who led after the first round, now sits only one stroke behind the leaders with a solid posting of 74-77—151.  Also posting top scores were Kristen Hill of Weston, Fla., and Courtney Harter of Clearwater, Fla.  Hill tallied a two-round total of 153 and Harter currently sits in fifth with a 154.

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.

The final round of the Nike Golf Junior at Lee County will be a shotgun start beginning Thursday morning at 8:30 a.m.  For more information about the Nike Golf Junior at Lee County, please contact tournament headquarters at (239) 482-7644.

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