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Pine Needles Lodge & Golf Club
Southern Pines, N.C. • August 11 - 14

Kiser captures fourth AJGA title of 2008 at Pine Needles Lodge & Golf Club

SOUTHERN PINES, N.C. — Evan Beck of Virginia Beach, Va., fired a three-round total of 7-under-par 206 to win the Golf Pride Junior Classic by three shots. Victoria Kiser of Orlando, Fla., finished the tournament with a score of 7-over-par 220 at Pine Needles Lodge & Golf Club to capture her fourth AJGA win of the year.  

Conducted by the American Junior Golf Association, the Golf Pride Junior Classic was a 54-hole stroke-play event held at Pine Needles Lodge & Golf Club, the host to three U.S. Women’s Opens in the past 12 years. The tournament field consisted of 75 boys and 24 girls, ages 12-18, from 15 states. The Boys Division played the par-71 course at 6,902 yards, while the Girls Division was played at 6,002 yards.

Beck, who is competing in next week’s U.S. Amateur at nearby Pinehurst Resort & Country Club, closed out the event with a round of 3-under-par 68 that featured four birdies and one bogey.  He was the only player in the field to record three rounds in the 60s.

“I just felt like I was in control the whole day,” Beck said. “This is pretty good momentum for me. I’m really excited about the U.S. Amateur.”

Zachary Blair of Ogden, Utah finished in second place at 4-under-par 209. In third place at 3-under-par 210 was Michael McGowan of Southern Pines, N.C. Grayson Murray of Raleigh, N.C., took fourth place at 2-under-par 211. Robert Hoadley, also of Southern Pines, and Zach Edmondson of Morrisville, N.C., tied for fifth place at even-par 213.

Kiser’s victory did not come easy, as she came to the short par-3 16th ahead by only one stroke.

“I knew I had to make birdie on one of the final three holes,” Kiser said. “On No. 16 I hit a little 9-iron to about 20 feet and the birdie putt was a left-to-right putt that went dead center.”

Finishing tied for second at 11-over-par 224 were Christina Miller of Bradenton, Fla., and Courtney Gunter of Matthews, N.C., the tournament’s defending champion.

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, the largest Association of its kind, has an annual junior membership (boys and girls ages 12-18) of approximately 5,000 junior golfers from 49 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, 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.

            For more information on the Golf Pride Junior Classic, please call AJGA National Headquarters at (770) 868-4200, or visit the AJGA Web site.