The Desert Mountain Club, Cochise and Geronimo Courses
Scottsdale, Arizona
July 7-12, 2002

Lincicome grabs Girls Division lead

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. - Randy Lowry of Spring, Texas, shot a 7-under-par 65 to take a one-stoke lead in the Boys Division at the Rolex Tournament of Champions. Brittany Lincicome of Seminole, Fla., moved to the front of the Girls Division as she carded a 2-under-par 70.

Conducted by the American Junior Golf Association, the 25th annual Rolex Tournament of Champions is being held on the par-72 Cochise and Geronimo courses at The Desert Mountain Club. The 72-hole event features 169 players - 109 boys and 60 girls - from 30 states and five foreign countries, and includes 57 Polo Golf Junior All-Americans. Past champions include Charles Howell III, David Duval, Phil Mickelson, Kellee Booth and Grace Park.

Lowry's bogey-free round included five birdies and an eagle on the 533-yard, par-5 ninth hole. His drive off the No. 9 tee landed in the middle of the fairway and he hit a 3-wood to within three feet of the hole. The 15-year-old shot a 69 in the first round for a two-day total of 134.

"I drove the ball well today and hit 16 greens in regulation," Lowry said. "The front nine did not go as well for me, but I was patient and the putts started to fall. I finished my round well today and the key for tomorrow will be to hit all the fairways and greens in regulation."

A second round score of 64 catapulted Vargas from a tie for 10th to second place after two rounds. The University of Florida signee started his round off with birdies on holes No. 1 and 2. He finished the front nine at 5-under-par and three more birdies on the back nine carried Vargas to 8-under-par for the round and 135 for the championship.

"It's amazing how fortunate I was today," Vargas said. "I was in the desert three times and played those holes at 1-under-par. Geronimo is tough because the desert comes into play a lot off the tee. I need to stay consistent off the tee and set myself up for nice shots into the green."

University of Georgia-bound Kevin Kisner of Aiken, S.C., and future University of Southern California Trojan Taylor Wood of Laguna Niguel, Calif., are tied for third at 136.

In the Girls Division, Lincicome turned in six birdies and two eagles in the second round, but inconsistent play plagued the 16-year-old. She started her round with an eagle on the first hole after she hit a 6-iron five feet from the hole. Lincicome also carded an eagle by holing out from 170 yards on the 324-yard, par-4 14th hole for a two-day total of 73-70-143.

"Today was a total roller coaster," Lincicome said. "I have been hooking my driver the past week or so and it was on and off today. In my practice round Geronimo seemed tough, but today I realized that it is beatable. I just want to remain around par and see what happens."

Erica Blasberg of Corona, Calif., Christine Fernandez of Henderson, Nev., and Margaret Shirley of Roswell, Ga., are tied for second at 145.

Fifty-four boys and 30 girls survived a cut after the second round. Third-round action begins Thursday at 7 a.m. off the No. 1 and 10 tees of the Geronimo course.

For more information about the AJGA Rolex Tournament of Champions, please call AJGA Tournament Headquarters at (480) 488-1362 ext. 1028, or visit the Association's Web site at ajga.org.

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