AJGA THUNDERBIRD INTERNATIONAL JUNIOR
Grayhawk Golf Club, Raptor Course
Scottsdale, Arizona
May 24-27, 2002

LANG TIES RAPTOR COURSE RECORD FOR VICTORY
Wittenberg holds on for win in Boys Division

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. - Two days after the men's course record was tied, Brittany Lang decided to do the same for the ladies' record. The McKinney, Texas, native fired a final round of 4-under-par 68 at the Thunderbird International Junior Monday to tie the course record and take the win. In the Boys Division, Casey Wittenberg of Memphis, Tenn., held on for a two-shot victory.

The third annual Thunderbird International Junior, conducted by the American Junior Golf Association on Grayhawk Golf Club's Raptor Course, featured 90 players representing 24 states and six foreign countries. Seventy Polo Golf Junior All-Americans, including both 2001 Polo Golf Junior Players of the Year, competed this holiday weekend.

Lang, 16, entered the final round three shots off the lead but after two bogeys on the front nine, she put together a string of four straight birdies starting on hole No. 9 to take the lead.

"I did not start off well," she said. "I got into a groove on No. 9 and was just thinking about making birdies. Once I got on the birdie streak, I knew that if I kept it up I would give myself a chance to win. I was sticking my iron shots and I kept making birdies."

Lang finished the day with seven birdies for a four-stroke victory while tying the competitive course record that Kim Kouwabunpat set two years ago at this event.

Coming down 18 fairway, Lang did not look at the leaderboard to see where she stood. Instead she chose to just play her game and hope for the best. Her errant approach shot on the par-5 landed in the water hazard and after taking a drop, she got up-and-down for a bogey and a two-shot victory.

"This win means a lot to me," she continued. "I feel lucky to have won this international tournament. It tells me that all my practice, hard work and commitment are paying off now and hopefully in the future."

In-Bee Park of Eustis, Fla., took runner-up honors with a three-round total of 1-over-par 217. Morgan Pressel of Boca Raton, Fla., and Jane Park of Beaumont, Calif., tied for third at 2-over-par 218.

In the Boys Division, Wittenberg entered the round with a six-stroke lead. After a 39 on the front nine, he had only a two-stroke margin at the turn.

"Today was pretty rough," the 17-year-old said. "I hit 16 greens but I did not hit it close to the hole. I missed some important putts early and I did not make the putts I had been making all week.

"On the back nine I tried to focus," he continued. "When I saw them making a charge, I realized I needed to get going. I tried to get back in front and I held on. I wish I could have played better."

The 2001 Polo Golf Boys Junior Player of the Year put together nines of 39-34 for a 1-over-par 73 in the final round of the international championship.

"This tournament is the hardest to qualify for and it feels like a (PGA TOUR) major," Wittenberg said. "No other tournament has this atmosphere and everyone has a good time here. This is great to win and it was an honor to be here."

Tyler Ley of Santa Barbara, Calif., who began the round seven shots off the pace, made a run at Wittenberg by carding four birdies for a 4-under-par 68. He finished the tournament two shots back at 6-under-par 210. Brendon Todd of Cary, N.C., finished the tournament with a birdie and an eagle to finish at 5-under-par 211. Rounding out the top five were Kevin Larsen of Santa Barbara, Calif., and Henry Liaw of Rowland Heights, Calif., at 4-under-par 212.

 
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Boys
1. Sam Burns
Shreveport, LA
2. Sam Horsfield
Davenport, FL
3. Philip Barbaree
Shreveport, LA
4. Gabriel Lench
Lake Mary, FL
5. Yechun (Carl) Yuan
Lake Mary, FL
Girls
1. Angel Yin
Arcadia, CA
2. Hannah O'Sullivan
Chandler, AZ
3. Mika Liu
Beverly Hills, CA
4. Nelly Korda
Bradenton, FL
5. Sierra Brooks
Sorrento, FL
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Weekly Results
EaglesDream Golf Academy Junior Open
Boys
Total
1
*Austin Hitt
210
2
Zhengkai Bai
210
3
Zachary Bariso
211
Girls
Total
1
Latanna Stone
219
2
Emma Albrecht
220
3
Lei Ye
222
Under Armour® / Scott Stallings Championship
Boys
Total
1
Goodman Rudolph
205
2
Ryan Hall
206
3
Brayden Garrison
207
Girls
Total
1
Olivia Cason
207
2
Amanda Doherty
208
3
Abigail Heck
212
Lockton Kansas City Junior
Boys
Total
1
Andy Spencer
202
2
Reese Ramsey
207
3
Brian Choe
209
Girls
Total
1
Pajaree Anannarukarn
208
T
2
Mia Ayer
220
T
2
Alexa Tsay
220
The Yang Foundation Junior at Wood Ranch
Boys
Total
1
Sean Yi
209
2
Brandon Brame
210
3
Seldon Doyle
212
Girls
Total
1
Kailie Vongsaga
215
2
Brittany Park
216
3
Ziyi Wang
217
AJGA Philadelphia Junior presented by Golf Performance Center
Boys
Total
1
Christian Cavaliere
216
2
Brent Ito
218
3
Alex Zhu
219
Girls
Total
1
Holly McCann
220
T
2
Brynn Walker
221
T
2
Jackie Rogowicz
221
* Won via sudden-death playoff
FJ Live Scoring
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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.