STANLEY FINISHES AT 12-UNDER-PAR TO WIN HP BOYS JUNIOR CHAMPIONSHIP
Final-round 67 propels Stanley ahead of Josh Jones
ORLANDO — Kyle Stanley 17, of Gig Harbor, Wash., came from two shots behind on the back nine to overtake Josh Jones, 15, of The Colony, Texas and claim victory at the HP Junior Boys Championship. Stanley fired a final round of 5-under-par 67 to outlast Jones, who started the final round tied with Stanley at 7-under-par.
The HP Boys Junior Championship was a 72-hole event conducted by the American Junior Golf Association at Arnold Palmer's Bay Hill Club & Lodge, home of the PGA TOUR's Bay Hill Invitational. The par-72 layout was played at 7,189 yards during tournament play. Past Champions of the event include Tiger Woods (1992), David Duval (1989) and Jim Furyk (1987). The event, which featured 90 of the nation's premier junior boys, included participants from 22 states, Chile, Colombia and Japan.
The victory was extra special for Stanley, who had close calls this year at the Rolex Tournament of Champions and the Pacific Northwest International Junior presented by Jeff Troesch, only to settle for second-place finishes.
“That all made me really hungry to come down here and get a win,” Stanley said.
Stanley fired a 2-under-par 34 on the front nine, but at the turn was two strokes behind Jones, whose 4-under-par 32 on the front side gave him the lead with nine to play.
“I played with [Jones] [Thursday] so I knew if I wanted to win the tournament I was going to have to go low,” Stanley said.
Birdies on Nos. 10, 14 and 15 left Stanley two ahead of Jones with three to play, but when Jones birdied the par-5 16th hole, the cushion was only one.
“You've got to tip your hat to him for the way he played today,” Stanley said.
Stanley said he still cannot believe he has won a tournament that so many PGA TOUR stars have won in the past.
“It hasn't sunk in yet,” Stanley said. “It probably will take a couple of days.”
Jones made five birdies to keep the pressure on Stanley all day, and said being in contention was a good experience.
“I'm looking forward to playing a lot more and getting back there,” Jones said. “Hopefully next time I get the job done.”
Jones made par on the par-3 17th hole with Stanley in thick rough short of the green, but watched as Stanley got up-and-down.
“That was pretty fantastic,” said Jones of his competitor's clutch chip.
Jones was left down one stroke in the 18th fairway, and fired his approach shot at the flag, only to have it fall into the lake short of the green. Stanley made par to seal the win.
Turning in the round of the day was Arnond Vongvanij of Bradenton, Fla., who fired an 8-under-par 64 to shoot the tournament's low round. Vongvanij was bogey-free and made eight birdies on his round to finish the tournament alone in third at 3-under-par 285.
Peter Uihlein of Bradenton, Fla., finished in fourth place alone at 2-under-par 286 for the tournament.
Dan Rush of Avon Lake, Ohio, and Jason Kang of Valencia, Calif., tied for fifth at 1-under-par 287 for the week.
A stroke behind at even-par and tied in seventh were Mu Hu of Shen Zhen, China, and Rickie Fowler of Murrieta, Calif.
Jeffrey Edelman of Southlake, Texas, Erich Johnston of Fort Wayne, Ind., and Samuel Saunders of Windermere, Fla., tied for ninth with tournament totals of 3-over-par 291.
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 AJGA, the largest Association of its kind, 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, a supporter of the AJGA since 1983, became the inaugural AJGA Premier Partner in 2004.
AJGA alumni have risen to the top of amateur, collegiate and professional golf. More than 160 former AJGA juniors currently play on the PGA and LPGA Tours and have compiled more than 300 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.
For more information about the HP Boys Junior Championship call AJGA National Headquarters at (770) 868-4200.