Buchanan's back nine gives him lead at Stockton Convention and Visitors Bureau Junior Open
Three girls top leaderboard at The Reserve at Spanos Park
STOCKTON, Calif. — Andrew Buchanan of Los Altos Hills, Calif., fired a 5-under-par 67 to take a three-stroke lead in Tuesday's first round of the Stockton Convention and Visitors Bureau Junior Open. In the Girls Division, Hee Wook Choi of San Diego, Anne Cheng of Torrance, Calif., and Briana Mao of Folsom, Calif., are tied for first place after carding even-par 72 at The Reserve at Spanos Park.
The Stockton Convention and Visitors Bureau Junior Open is a 54-hole stroke play event conducted by the American Junior Golf Association at The Reserve at Spanos Park in Stockton, Calif. The tournament field features 69 boys and 27 girls from six states, Brazil, China, South Korea, Taiwan and Thailand. The Boys Division is playing the par-72 course at 7,039 yards and the Girls Division is playing at 6,246 yards.
Buchanan shot a 6-under-par 30 on his back nine, which included an eagle on the par-5 No. 16.
“I started putting my approach shots close and made a lot of five-footers for birdie on the back,” Buchanan said. “I'm confident with my game right now and I'm not going to try and change anything.”
In second place at 2-under-par 70 are Ryann Ree of Redondo Beach, Calif., Cameron Champ of Sacramento, Calif., Travis Rowney of Pleasanton, Calif., Eric Taylor of San Juan Capistrano, Calif., and Andrej Bevins of Elk Grove, Calif.
Mao, who recorded five birdies on the day, said her in-round adjustments allowed her to recover from a slow start.
“I was hooking the ball for my first three holes,” said Mao, who will be attending the University of Virginia this fall. “I fixed my swing then started making my putts — that gave me confidence.”
Cheng fired six birdies during her opening round, four of which came on the back nine.
“My putting was awesome,” Cheng said. “I don't know what happened, but everything was going in.”
Choi carded a bogey-free front nine and made three birdies during her round en route to grabbing a share of the first-round lead.
“I saved par a lot on the front nine thanks to my short putting,” Choi said. “Playing a bogey-free front nine gave me confidence.”
The trio holds a two-shot lead over four players tied at 2-over-par 74.
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 more than 40 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, 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.
The Stockton Convention and Visitors Bureau was founded in 1979 and is the official destination marketing organization for Stockton, Calif. The bureau's mission is to promote Stockton by increasing the awareness and enhancing the image of the city's diverse cultural, historical and recreational assets. Since its founding, the bureau has been integral in bringing hundreds of quality regional, national and international sporting events and tournaments to Stockton. More information can be found at www.VisitStockton.org.
AJGA alumni have risen to the top of amateur, collegiate and professional golf. Former AJGA juniors have compiled more than 500 victories on the PGA and LPGA Tours. AJGA alumni include Stewart Cink, Matt Kuchar, Hunter Mahan, Phil Mickelson, Rickie Fowler, Paula Creamer, Cristie Kerr, Inbee Park and Morgan Pressel.
The second-round tee times of the Stockton Convention and Visitors Bureau Junior Open will run from 7:30 a.m. — 12:40 p.m off the No.1 tee. For more information about the Stockton Convention and Visitors Bureau Junior Open, please contact AJGA Tournament Headquarters at (678) 327-6982, or visit the AJGA website at ajga.org.