Down-to-the-Wire Finishes at Winn Grips Heather Farr Classic hosted by Longbow Golf Club
Arboleda, Lee capture titles at Longbow Golf Club
MESA, Ariz. - Anton Arboleda of La Canada, Calif., has been waiting his entire AJGA career for his first win and finally got it at Longbow Golf Club after firing his second sub-70 round of the tournament. Alison Lee of Valencia, Calif., held on to her second-round lead and capitalized on key shots to capture the Girls Division title.
The 12th-annual Winn Grips Heather Farr Classic hosted by Longbow Golf Club was a 54-hole stoke play event held at Longbow Golf Club in Mesa, Ariz. The 144-player field featured 15 Rolex Junior All-Americans and 37 college signees. In all, 13 states were represented along with Switzerland, Canada and Mexico. The Boys Division played the par-71 course at 6,999 yards, while the Girls Division yardage was set at 6,150.
A back-and-forth battle ensued between second-round leader Jeffrey Kang of Fullerton, Calif., and Arboleda, who was one stroke back going into the final round. After two holes of play, Arboleda evened things up and made the turn one stroke ahead of Kang. The two battled through the next nine holes, trading the leader position three times.
A missed par putt by Kang on No. 17 put him one stroke back and opened the door for an Arboleda tap-in birdie putt on the par-5 18th. With 80 onlookers, Arboleda claimed his first AJGA title coming in at 8-under-par 205.
“It was tense out there, but Jeff and I had fun together,” said Arboleda. “We both made some key putts and each missed out on a couple of opportunities. I kept my composure and was able to come out on top.”
AJ McInerney of Henderson, Nev., and Kang tied for second with tournament totals of 6-under-par 207s. Matthew Hansen of Los Osos, Calif., finished fourth at 3-under-par 209, while a three-way tie for fifth was shared by Alberto Sanchez of Nogales, Ariz., Yi Keun Chang of Diamond Bar, Calif., and first-round leader Andrew Levitt of Rancho Santa Margarita, Calif.
A similar wire-to-wire competition was had in the Girls Division with four-time Rolex Junior All-American Rachel Morris of Carlsbad, Calif., and No. 6-ranked Lee.
Morris was three shots back heading into the final round and made up ground to even things out after 15 holes of play. A missed par putt on No.16 by Lee put Morris in front by one. A two-foot birdie putt by Lee on No. 17 and a bogey by Morris put Lee back on top heading into the final hole. An aggressive lay-up by Lee set her up for a five-footer. While she missed the putt, Morris two-putted, sealing the win for 15-year-old Lee.
“I can't even describe the feeling of this win,” Lee said. “This field was so strong and I was so nervous that I was shaking on No. 15. I'm just so glad I was able to get my confidence back and finish with a win.”
Morris carded the low final round for the Girls Division with a 1-under-par 70 on the day to earn her second-place honors. Arizona native Lindsey Weaver of Scottsdale, finished third with a tournament total of 2-over-par 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 AJGA provides valuable exposure for college golf scholarships, and has an annual junior membership (boys and girls ages 12-18) of approximately 5,000 junior golfers from 49 states and 30 countries. To ensure scholarship opportunities for all junior golfers who have the skill, the AJGA created the Achieving Competitive Excellence (ACE) Grant program to provide financial assistance to young players in need.
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. Former AJGA juniors have compiled more than 400 victories on the PGA and LPGA Tours. AJGA alumni include Tiger Woods, Phil Mickelson, Stewart Cink, Cristie Kerr, Paula Creamer and Morgan Pressel.
For more information on the Winn Grips Heather Farr Classic hosted by Longbow Golf Club, please contact AJGA Headquarters at (770) 868-4200.