REDFERN ENTERS FINAL ROUND WITH 3-SHOT LEAD AT AJGA NEW MEXICO OPEN
Grice, Hu tied at 1-under-par 143 for Girls Division top spot at Sandia Golf Club
ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — Brenden Redfern of Austin, Texas, fired a two-day total 7-under-par 137 to stand alone atop the leaderboard in the Boys Division at the AJGA New Mexico Open. Casey Grice of College Station, Texas, and Bonnie Hu of Fremont, Calif., are tied at 1-under-par 143 for first place in the Girls Division.
Conducted by the American Junior Golf Association, the AJGA New Mexico Open is a 54-hole stroke play event being held at Sandia Golf Club. The tournament field consists of 99 players, 75 boys and 24 girls, from 19 states and Mexico. The Boys Division is being played at 7,383 yards and the Girls Division at 6,184 yards.
Redfern's ability to stay calm helped him to his low score for the day.
“The key was to stay patient today, which I was able to do,” Redfern said. “I kept my emotions steady and knew when to go for the flag and when to play it safe.”
Though he wasn't able to take complete control of his driver, he made up for it with his iron shots. Redfern, who is currently ranked 132nd in the Polo Golf Rankings, was able to hit 15 of 18 greens. He was also able to card six birdies including one on No. 10.
“On No. 10, I hit it to the far right off the tee and was able to stick it within 10 feet,” he said. “I made the putt for birdie, which was huge; it took me from 3 to 4-under.”
Paul McConnell of Garland, Texas, is in second after carding a 4-under-par 140. In a six-way tie for third at 2-under-par 142 are Johnathan Schnitzer of Houston, Reid Martin, of Mukilteo, Wash., Brock Wilson of Beaumont, Texas, McCoy Willey of St. George, Utah, James Lee of Albuquerque, N.M., and Hayden Stephens of Georgetown, Texas.
In the Girls Division, Grice, who is currently ranked 98th in the Polo Golf Rankings, had a rough start carding a 1-over-par 37 on the front nine, she was able to turn that around on the back nine, and posted a solid 1-under-par 71 for the day after carding her first birdie on No. 7.
“I sank a 10-footer for birdie on No. 7,” Grice said. “That helped turn the tide and got me going into the back nine, where I was able to card four more birdies.”
Hu, who came in second at last month's Trader Joe's Junior Championship, got off to a solid start carding 2-under-par 34 for the front nine. She credits her low two-day total to her putter.
“I putted a lot better today,” Hu said. “Yesterday I blew it by [the hole] or left it short, but today I missed no short putts and had no 3-putts either.”
Standing alone in third place at 2-over-par 146 is Paige Spiranac of Monument, Colo.
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 an annual junior membership (boys and girls ages 12-18) of approximately 5,000 junior golfers from 49 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 is in its third decade of AJGA support, became the inaugural AJGA Premier Partner in 2004. In 2007, after 12 years of support, Polo Ralph Lauren became the AJGA's second Premier Partner.
Located in Albuquerque, New Mexico, Sandia Resort & Casino features a world class golf experience that offers a visually stunning and strategic 18-hole golf course designed by Scott Miller, complete practice facility and a 16,000 square foot "Pueblo" style clubhouse featuring restaurant, golf shop and expansive patio. Sandia opened to rave reviews having been honored with the afore mentioned Golf Magazine accolade and winning the 2005 golf "Development of the Year" award from Golf Inc Magazine. The golf club at Sandia is a key amenity to the Sandia Resort & Casino that is already a popular gaming and entertainment venue. In 2006, Sandia opened a world class resort that features 228 luxurious, oversized guest rooms including over 30 suites. Every guest room and suite is highlighted by awe-inspiring views of the Albuquerque skyline or the rugged wildness of the Sandia Mountains. The resort also includes over 35,000 square feet of "state of the art" entertainment, meeting & convention space that can accommodate groups up to 3000, a 12,000 square foot spa and a multitude of dining options including a 410 seat signature buffet, steakhouse and Bien Shur, the roof top gourmet restaurant with an indoor/outdoor entertainment lounge with the most breath-taking views this side of the Valle Grande.
The golf facility at Sandia Resort & Casino is professionally managed by OB Sports Golf Management, a diversified, golf-oriented company with a long history of success. OB Sports currently manages 30 premier golf courses and country clubs throughout the United States and Mexico. Known for its comprehensive and personalized services since 1972, OB Sports has become widely acclaimed as the leader in boutique-style golf course management. For more information about OB Sports Golf Management, visit www.obsports.com, or call 480.948.1300.
For information about the Sandia Resort & Casino visit www.sandiacasino.com or call 877.272.9199.
For more information on Sandia Golf Club visit www.sandiagolf.com or call 505.798.3990.
Sandia Resort & Casino is a business enterprise of the Pueblo of Sandia and is part of a master-planned development on Sandia land just outside of Albuquerque. Located at I-25 and Tramway Road, Sandia Casino employs 1,900 New Mexicans, 1,300 of them employed by the casino.
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 Tiger Woods, Phil Mickelson, Jim Furyk, Stewart Cink, Davis Love III, Cristie Kerr, Pat Hurst, Paula Creamer, Brittany Lincicome, Morgan Pressel and Julieta Granada.
Final-round tee times will run from 7 — 11:48 a.m. off the No. 1 tee Thursday. For more information about the AJGA New Mexico Open, please contact AJGA Tournament Headquarters 505-798-3731.
# AJGA #