GARBER TAKES RANDY WISE JUNIOR OPEN TITLE IN SUDDEN-DEATH PLAYOFF
Campbell takes home first AJGA title in Girls Division at Flint Elks Lodge 222 Golf club
GRAND BLANC, Mich. - Joey Garber, 17, of Petoskey, Mich., won in a sudden-death playoff by making a birdie on the third playoff hole at the Randy Wise Junior Open Friday to finish with a 7-under-par 209. In the Girls Division, Talia Campbell, 15, of Dallas, shot a final round 1-over-par 73 to win her first AJGA title.
Conducted by the American Junior Golf Association, the Randy Wise Junior Open was a 54-hole stroke play event held at Flint Elks Lodge 222 Golf Club. The tournament field consisted of 75 Boys and 23 Girls, ages 12-18, from 17 states and Canada. The par-72 course was played at 6,932 yards for the Boys Division and 6,115 yards for the Girls Division.
It took Garber three extra holes to take home his first AJGA title over Tyler Kato of Seattle. Kato made birdie on No. 18 to send the tournament into a playoff.
With a strong back nine where he fired a 4-under-par 32, Garber finished the final round with a 6-under-par 66. Garber was hitting his irons well all day and wanted to take a shot at the lead on the par-3 199 yard 17th. Garber hit his tee shot to the far right side of the green, but was able to follow it by sinking a 30-foot putt to make birdie. Garber also had birdies on Nos. 1, 3, 4, 10, 12, and 13.
“I've been really close before, so it is nice to finally get a win,” Garber said. “On the last playoff hole I had the same putt Tyler had in regulation so I knew how to set it up. I told myself to get far right and I got a good line and it just went in center cut.”
Theodore Lederhausen of Hinsdale, Ill., finished in third carding a 2-under-par 214. In a tie for fourth were Ryan Jahn of Jupiter, Fla., and Matthew Felsenfeld of West Bloomfield, Mich., at 1-under-par 215.
In the Girls Division, Campbell was tied for the lead coming in to the final round. Campbell was consistent to start her round, playing a bogey-free front-nine. Carding back-to-back birdies on Nos. 8 and 9, Campbell finished the front at 2-under-par 34. On the back nine, Campbell started thinking more about the scores, rather than her current shot. Campbell recovered by concentrating on her breathing and sank a short putt on No. 18 to make par and take home the trophy with an even-par 216 total.
“It really has not sunk in yet,” Campbell said. “I came in to the tournament wanting to finish in the top three, but this is a bonus. I'm more nervous now about making my awards speech than I was making my last putt.”
Amy Meier of Rochester Hills, Mich., shot a low final round of 1-under-par 71 to finish in second at 1-over-par 217. In third was Ashley Armstrong of Flossmoor, Ill., at 2-over-par 218.
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 an annual junior membership (boys and girls ages 12-18) of more than 5,000 junior golfers from 50 states and more than 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.
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 350 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.
For more information about the Randy Wise Junior Open, please contact AJGA National Headquarters at (770) 868-4200.