AJGA CALLAWAY GOLF JUNIOR ALL-STAR CLASSIC
Paradise Point Golf Club - Gold Course
Jacksonville, North Carolina
July 29-31, 2002
HOPKINS COLLECTS FIRST VICTORY IN PLAYOFF
Niederkohr wins Girls Division to claim second title
JACKSONVILLE, N.C. - Luke Hopkins of Greer, S.C.,
needed one extra hole in scorching temperatures to win the
Boys Division of the AJGA Callaway Golf Junior All-Star Classic
at Jacksonville. Hopkins edged out first-round leader Matthew
Hammock of Hinesville, Ga., in the first-hole of a sudden-death
playoff Wednesday to garner his first AJGA title. In the Girls
Division, Holly Niederkohr of Marysville, Ohio, collected
her second AJGA victory after firing a final-round 1-under-par
71 to finish at 75-71-146.
The 36-hole event, which saw temperatures in the upper 90s
and a heat index topping 110 degrees, was conducted by the
American Junior Golf Association at Paradise Point Golf Club's
Gold Course. It featured 87 juniors representing 15 states
while 23 North Carolina natives were also included in the
The ultimate goal of the Callaway Golf Junior All-Star Series
is to give younger AJGA members more opportunities to compete
against players from across the country. The AJGA is conducting
seven Junior All-Star Series events this season, which is
now in its fifth year of existence.
Hopkins, who sat two strokes behind to begin the day, made
his charge on the front nine with birdies on Nos. 1, 4 and
7 to make the turn at 3-under-par 33. The 15-year-old finished
the back nine at one-over-par en route to a 2-under-par 70
and a 36-hole total of 72-70-142.
Hammock, playing in his first-ever AJGA event, forced the
playoff after draining a 15-foot birdie putt on the final
hole to finish at 70-72-142.
In the playoff, Hopkins' third shot dropped within five feet
of the hole, allowing him to birdie the par-5, 505-yard, 18th
hole and seal the win.
"This is really a good feeling. I knew a birdie would
probably win and I didn't want to make bogey, that was for
sure," Hopkins said about the playoff.
"I knew after I made the turn that if I didn't blow it
on the back nine, I would be close. But I really credit my
putting today. It allowed me to trust my game all day."
Drew Weaver of High Point, N.C., Paul Haley of Dallas and
Bobby Hudson of Memphis, Tenn., finished in a three-way tie
for third at 143.
Niederkohr, who won the 2001 AJGA Junior All-Star event at
Kingwood, entered the final round tied with Mayule Tomimbang
of Kissimmee, Fla. Niederkohr quickly separated herself from
the pack, as the 15-year-old played the front nine in even-par
fashion before notching two more birdies on the back nine
to finish one-under-par 71.
"This feels really good," said Niederkohr, who added
a top-five finish at the AJGA Junior All-Star event at Mississippi
last June. "I felt really confident coming in to this
tournament because in the last few weeks I had gotten my swing
worked out. I was just feeling better.
"I wanted to come out today and just play even-par so
I wouldn't have to be nervous down the stretch and I did that."
Jordyn Wells of Bethel Park, Pa., finished second after shooting
a final round 73 to sit at 77-73-150 while Tyrette Metzendorf
of Winter Haven, Fla., rounded out the top three with a 78-74--152.
For more information about the AJGA Callaway Golf Junior All-Star
Classic at Jacksonville, please call our National Headquarters
at (770) 868-4200.