I.R.I. ARIZONA NATIONAL MIXED TEAM CHAMPIONSHIP
HOSTED BY ANNIKA SORENSTAM AND JIM FURYK
Arizona National Golf Club
Tucson, Ariz. • May 5 - 7
FOUR ROLEX JUNIOR ALL-AMERICANS TIED FOR LEAD AT 8-UNDER-PAR
TUCSON, Ariz.- Four Rolex Junior All-Americans are tied for the lead at 8-under-par 134 after two rounds of golf at the I.R.I. Arizona National Mixed Team Championship hosted by Annika Sorenstam and Jim Furyk. First-round leaders Jamie Lovemark of Rancho Santa Fe, Calif., and Sydnee Michaels of Temecula, Calif., are tied with Josh Jones of The Colony, Texas, and Lila Barton of Dallas, following 36 holes at Arizona National.
Conducted by the American Junior Golf Association, the I.R.I. Arizona National Mixed Team Championship hosted by Annika Sorenstam and Jim Furyk is a 54-hole stroke play team event being held at Arizona National in Tucson, Ariz. The par-71 course is set up at 6660 yards for the boys and 5951 for the girls. The tournament field consists of 36 teams, comprised of one boy and one girl, representing six states and Canada, including 18 Rolex Junior All-Americans.
The event employs three scoring formats over two days. On Saturday, the first 18 holes were played as a modified Scotch, and the second round was an alternate shot foursome. The final round will be a four-ball competition played on Sunday.
The Lovemark-Michaels team, named Par Wars, led by two strokes after the first round, carding a 9-under-par 62, then shot a second-round 72. Jones and Barton, known as Texas Thunder From Down Under, shot a second-round 65 to break out of their first-round five-way tie for 12th at 69 and earn a place atop the leaderboard.
Par Wars created a two-stroke lead after the first round by shooting a steady 31-31, including an eagle on No. 5, a 516-yard par 5. In their afternoon round, Par Wars carded five birdies, four of which were in their last eight holes.
“Jamie had a lot of great putts for birdie,” said Michaels. “Tomorrow we need to keep the ball in the fairway and be aggressive.”
Texas Thunder From Down Under opened the day with a 2-over-par 38, followed by a 4-under-par 31 on the back-nine. In their second round, the team made six birdies and no bogeys on their way to a 6-under-par 65.
“It would be really neat to win because you get to share it with someone,” said Barton.
“Especially when golf is such an individual sport,” added Jones.
Four teams are tied for third at 137 following the first 36 holes of play. Philip Francis and Esther Choe, both of Scottsdale, Ariz., shot 64-73 while sibling combination Darren and Jessica Wallace of Langley, British Columbia, shot 66-71. Brian Kim of Yorba Linda, Calif., and Mina Harigae of Monterey, Calif. carded 67-70 and Andrew Nottenkamper of Boynton Beach, Fla., and Kimberly Johnson of San Diego, shot 68-69.
The final round (four-ball) will begin Sunday, May 7, off the Nos. 1 and 10 tees of Arizona National from 7-8:20 a.m. with an awards ceremony immediately following the conclusion of play.
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 a junior membership (boys and girls ages 12-18) of approximately 5,000 junior golfers from 50 states and 30 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 enters its third decade of support, became the inaugural AJGA Premier Partner in 2004.
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 280 wins. AJGA alumni include Phil Mickelson, Tiger Woods, Davis Love III, Mike Weir, Charles Howell III, Jim Furyk, Dottie Pepper, Grace Park, Cristie Kerr and Paula Creamer.
For more information, please call tournament headquarters at (520) 749-3519.
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