Wolf and Aprati Soar to First-Round Lead at Preseason Junior at White Hawk presented by South Shore Sports
Grassel and Dubsky are tied atop the leaderboard at White Hawk Country Club in Girls Division
CROWN POINT, Ind. — Michael Wolf of Mason, Ohio, and Gabe Aprati of New Lenox, Ill., both carded a 1-over-par 73 as they were able to control shots against wind gusts of up to 25 mph. Two local players, Kelly Grassel of Chesterton, Ind., and Harley Dubsky of Valparaiso, Ind., shot 4-over-par 76 to lead the way in the Girls Division.
Conducted by the American Junior Golf Association, the Preseason Junior at White Hawk presented by South Shore Sports is a 36-hole stroke play event held at White Hawk Country Club on the Red and Silver courses. The 96-player field features players from 10 states. The Boys Division is playing White Hawk Country Club at 6,978 yards, while the Girls Division is playing the course at 5,922 yards.
The Preseason Junior at White Hawk presented by South Shore Sports is one of eight events held as part of the Golf Academy of America Preseason Junior Series. The Golf Academy of America Preseason Junior Series is a series designed specifically for first-time AJGA members or those members who have not yet been accepted to or participated in an AJGA event in the current calendar year and/or the previous calendar year.
Wolf used four birdies and a hot putter to tie for the first-round lead in his first AJGA tournament. He also credits his low round to the experience he gained through the practice round.
“It was a tough practice round,” Wolf said. “But it was nice to get to know the course — with all the doglegs and hazards. I'm glad I was able to learn from yesterday. Making all my putts inside 10 feet was also nice.”
Also playing in his first AJGA event, Aprati used a 2-under-par 34 on the front nine where consistency became a key factor. He was able to hit seven out of nine greens on the front side and he is hoping that he is able to duplicate that consistency in the final round.
“Its great to get out there and play well against tough competition from all over the country,” Aprati said. “To be a newcomer and play well — it feels good. I'm really excited for tomorrow.”
Tommy Schofield of Mundelein, Ill., sits alone in third after a 2-over-par 74. Tied for fourth at 3-over-par 75 is Michael Nutter of Kildeer, Ill., Nate Yankovich of Blacklick, Ohio, and Jordan Wetsch of St. Charles, Ill.
In the Girls Division, Grassel used a 2-under-par 34 front nine to get a jump start on the rest of the field. However the back nine seemed to prove more difficult.
“The back nine was a lot tougher,” Grassel said. “I just got a little bit ahead of myself and it's something I can work on for tomorrow.”
No stranger to competition, Dubsky battled wind and light rain on the last few holes to tie for the lead in the Girls Division. Fresh off a championship in a track and field meet earlier in the morning, she was able to make it to the course on time for 18 holes of golf. Even after her long day, she still remained upbeat and in gear for tomorrow.
“I really like competition,” Dubsky said. “It always brings out the best in me. Thankfully tomorrow is just golf.”
Sitting alone in third is Haylee Harford of Leavittsburg, Ohio, after firing a 6-over-par 78.
GOLF ACADEMY OF AMERICA, with campuses located in San Diego, Phoenix, Orlando and Myrtle Beach, is the oldest and largest two-year golf career college in the world. GAA's 16-month program balances classroom studies, practical experience and comprehensive understanding of the business of golf. For more information, call 800-342-7342 or visit http://www.golfacademy.edu.
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.
The final round of the Preseason Junior at White presented by South Shore Sports begins Sunday at White Hawk Country Club with an 8 a.m. shotgun start. For more information about this tournament, please contact Tournament Headquarters at (678) 485-1135.