After a record-setting pace over the past two weeks, Justin Thomas must never want to leave Hawaii.
Thomas notched his second PGA TOUR victory in two weeks at the Sony Open in Hawaii on January 15, opening with an 11-under-par 59 and closing with a new PGA TOUR 72-hole scoring record at 27-under-par 253.
At 23 years old, Thomas became the youngest player to shoot a 59 and just the seventh player to do it on the PGA TOUR. Another AJGA alum, Jim Furyk, has broken 60 twice, including his famous 58 at the 2016 Travelers Championship.
After a decorated junior career with the AJGA, Thomas hosted his first AJGA tournament in the spring of 2016 over his birthday weekend. In 2017, Thomas will remain a tournament host at the Strategic Communications / Justin Thomas Junior Championship presented by Phocus. The 2017 event will take place at Harmony Landing Country Club where Thomas’ dad, Mike, is the head golf professional. Competing in 30 AJGA tournaments during his time, Thomas tallied three victories and was honored as a Rolex Junior All-American twice before attending the University of Alabama on a golf scholarship.
In addition to Thomas, two more 2016 AJGA tournament hosts completed an AJGA alumni sweep of the top three finishers. Englishman Justin Rose finished at 20-under-par 260 as the runner-up, while Jordan Spieth carded a final-round 7-under-par 63 to rise six spots up the leaderboard and finish third.
Latin America Amateur Championship
Toto Gana of Chile, claimed the Latin America Amateur Championship via a two-hole playoff over the weekend. Gana shot rounds of 68-71-69-71 for a tournament total of 1-under-par 279. Two other players made it into the playoff with Gana, Alvaro Ortiz of Mexico, and Joaquín Niemann also of Chile. Only the three players who made it into the playoff were under par for the tournament as the course played tough the entire weekend.
Joning the AJGA in 2016, Gana played in the Sergio Garcia Foundation Junior Championship where he finished T16. Ortiz played in 21 AJGA events during his six-year AJGA career. His best finish was a victory at the 2011 Bass Pro Shops / Payne Stewart Junior Championship. He was also named a Rolex Junior All-American in 2013 and is currently a junior at the University of Arkansas. Niemann has played in four events during his time with the AJGA. He claimed a win in 2016 at the Sergio Garcia Foundation Junior Championship and was named a Rolex Junior All-American that same year. He has made a verbal commitment to play golf at the University of South Florida in the fall.