STANLEY AND COX PULL AWAY FROM FIELD AT ROLEX TOURNAMENT OF CHAMPIONS
Blumenherst retains lead in Girls Division
HILTON HEAD ISLAND, S.C. â€” Jordan Cox of Redwood City, Calif., and Kyle Stanley of Gig Harbor, Wash., broke away from the pack in the Boys Division by firing 70 and 69, respectively, to go to 6-under-par 213 for the tournament. Amanda Blumenherst of Scottsdale. Ariz., maintained her place atop the leaderboard despite shooting her first round over par for the tournament leaving her at 69-69-74â€”212.
Conducted by the American Junior Golf Association, the Rolex Tournament of Champions is a 72-hole stroke-play event with a cut in both divisions after two rounds. The 165-player field features 67 Rolex Junior All-Americans and players from 28 states and six foreign countries. In the event's 28th year, The Rolex Tournament of Champions is one of 11 Majors on the AJGA schedule and is the longest running AJGA tournament.
The event is being held at the Long Cove Club, which has played host to two AJGA tournaments (the 1997 Rolex Tournament of Champions and the 1999 Canon Cup).
Stanley said his 2-under-par front-nine gave him the momentum going into the turn and put him in ideal position going into the final round.
â€śI played pretty consistent today,â€ť Stanley said. â€śTomorrow, I want to keep doing what I've been doing. If I hit 18 greens, I'll be bound to make a few putts.â€ť
Second-round leader Cox is looking forward to battling out the final round, despite losing his one-shot lead in the third round.
â€śSaturday will be a whole new game,â€ť Cox said. â€śIf we're still separated coming into the final holes, it will be like match playâ€”it should be fun,â€ť he added.
Rory Hie of Lakewood, Calif., and Juan Candela of Bogota, Columbia, sit five-shots back tied for second at 212. Philip Francis of Scottsdale, Ariz., and first-round leader Blake Trimble of Rancho Santa Fe, Calif., are tied for fifth at 1-over-par 214.
In her final days of competition in junior golf, Blumenherst, who will attend Duke University in the fall, is looking forward to the final round. Recording one birdie on the day, Blumenherst is focusing on hitting fairways and avoiding bogeys.
â€śI'm just going to go out and play my game one hole at a time,â€ť Blumenherst said. â€śI know things will fall into place. This is one of my last junior tournaments and my goal is to win.â€ť
Jennifer Osborn of Huntington Beach, Calif., closed in on the lead position with a 68-72-73â€”213. Megan Grehan of Mamaroneck, N.Y., is also in striking distance two-shots out in third at 73-71-70â€”214. Jennie Lee of Huntington Beach, Calif., Esther Choe of Scottsdale, Ariz., and Kimberly Donovan of Hopkinton, Mass., all sit tied in fourth at 215.
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 largest Association of its kind, the AJGA has a junior membership (boys and girls ages 12-18) of approximately 5,000 junior golfers from 50 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 enters its third decade of support, became the inaugural AJGA Premier Partner in 2004.
AJGA alumni have risen to the top of amateur, collegiate and professional golf. More than 200 former AJGA juniors currently play on the PGA and LPGA Tours and have compiled more than 280 wins. AJGA alumni include Phil Mickelson, Tiger Woods, Davis Love III, Mike Weir, Charles Howell III, Jim Furyk, Dottie Pepper, Grace Park, Cristie Kerr and Beth Bauer.
Final-round tee times will run from 7:30 a.m. to 9:27 a.m., off the Nos. 1 and 10 tees at the Long Cove Club. For more information on the Rolex Tournament of Champions, please contact Tournament Headquarters at (843) 686-0456, or visit ajga.org.