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Robinson Ranch Golf Club - Mountain Course
Santa Clarita, Calif. • July 16 - 19

Patipaksiri leads Girls Division by three strokes at Robinson Ranch Golf Club

SANTA CLARITA, Calif. — Jordan Lee of Tarzana, Calif., leads the Hanmi Bank Junior Open by two strokes after turning in 6-under-par 66 for the first round of play. Lalita Patipaksiri of Cypress, Calif., leads the Girls Division by three stokes at 3-under-par 69 after Tuesday's round.

Conducted by the American Junior Golf Association, the Hanmi Bank Junior Open is a 54-hole stroke play event featuring 75 boys and 24 girls ages 12-18 from nine states with 89 juniors out of California. The event is being staged on the Robinson Ranch Golf Club's Valley Course with boys tees set at 6,864 yards and girls tees at 5,910 yards. Past champions of the event include Sam Chien, Tom Lo, Jennie Lee and Rachel Morris.

Lee said his mindset for the first round was to stay in the fairway and shoot even-par. Sporting his vintage 2006 Hanmi Bank Junior Open hat, Lee exceeded his expectations by carding eight birdies on the day.

“Tomorrow I plan to play aggressively and hope to putt like I did today,” Lee said. “I get nervous when I play, so I need to remember to just have fun tomorrow.”

James Back of Brea, Calif., is in second with 4-under-par 68. Tied for third place are T.J. Vogel of Cooper City, Fla., and Danny Katz of Simi Valley, Calif., with 3-under-par 69. In the fifth position is Joe Webber of Sandy, Utah with 2-under-par 70.

In the Girls Division, Patipaksiri's putting game kept her going throughout the round. By researching the course, she knew coming into this event that it would play difficult. Carding six birdies and two bogeys, Patipaksiri said she was very happy with the score she turned in.

“My putting game came alive when I was up for birdie putts,” Patipaksiri said. “My game plan for tomorrow is to keep my putting game from today and to stay confident through the round.”

In second place in the Girls Division is Danielle Kang of Oak Park, Calif., with even-par 72. Alison Lee of Valencia, Calif., is in the third position with 1-over-par 73.

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 an annual junior membership (boys and girls ages 12-18) of more than 5,000 junior golfers from 49 states and more than 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 160 former AJGA juniors currently play on the PGA and LPGA Tours and have compiled more than 300 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.

The second round of the Hanmi Bank Junior Open will begin Wednesday, July 18 with tee times running from 7:00 — 11:48 a.m.

For more information about the Hanmi Bank Junior Open, please contact tournament headquarters at (661) 252-8484.