Lovelady and Jonas Shoot Sub-70 Rounds to Top Boys Division at Steelwood Country Club
Butler stays consistent to lead Girls Division at AJGA Junior at Steelwood presented by AT&T
LOXLEY, Ala. — Tom Lovelady of Birmingham, Ala., tallied nine birdies to card a tournament-low 66 and grab a share of the lead Wednesday at Steelwood Country Club. John Jonas from Jacksonville, Fla., brought in a second round 4-under-par 68 tying him with Lovelady at 4-under-par 140. Michelle Butler of Dunedin, Fla., shot a second round 71 to stand alone at even-par 144.
The AJGA Junior at Steelwood presented by AT&T is a 54-hole stroke play tournament conducted by the American Junior Golf Association at Steelwood Country Club in Loxley, Ala. The event features 75 boys and 24 girls ages 12-18, from 11 states and China. The Boys Division is playing the par-72 course at 7,014 yards while the Girls Division is playing the course at 6,034 yards.
Lovelady was hitting his driver with confidence, enabling him to string together three consecutive birdies on two occasions.
“Yesterday, I was trying to guide my drives off the tees, but they weren't going very far,” Lovelady said. “After my first string of three birdies I got back to even par, and I knew I had it going.”
Jonas was striking the ball well and making putts when he needed them. He is extremely happy to have a share of the lead heading into the final round of an AJGA event.
“I knew it was going to be a good round after the par-3 No. 6 because my approach landed three feet from the flag,” Jonas said. “This is the best junior tour out there, so it's pretty cool to see yourself leading it.”
On the heels of the leaders, there are four players who are one shot back with a 3-under-par 141. Ryan Benton of Dothan, Ala., Mason Seaborn of Montrose, Ala., Stewart Jolly of Birmingham, Ala., and William Sellers of Montgomery, Ala., are all tied for third.
In the Girls Division, Butler was able to capitalize on some great approach shots to help make birdies and pars all afternoon.
“My longest putt today was from about 30 feet out,” Butler said. “I was hitting my irons close and was able to get myself in position to have a lot of birdie opportunities.”
Gabi Oubre' of Mobile, Ala., sits one shot back at 1-over-par 145. Elizabeth Doty of Palos Verdes Estates, Calif., is in third with a 2-over-par 146.
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 about the AJGA Junior at Steelwood presented by AT&T, please contact Tournament Director Kelli Holloway at (678) 315-3446.