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Isleta Eagle Golf Course
Albuquerque, New Mexico
May 27-30, 2003

Blumenherst fends off Cochran for Girls' Title

ALBUQUERQUE, N. M. - Derek Tolan of Highlands Ranch, Colo., successfully defended his title at the AJGA Southwestern Junior Classic on Friday firing a 2-under-par 70 to finish the tournament at 10-under-par, two shots better than his winning total from 2002. In the Girls Division, Amanda Blumenherst finished the tournament at 6-under-par to claim victory.

Conducted by the American Junior Golf Association, the Southwestern Junior Classic featured 102 players from 20 states, Canada, Peru and Puerto Rico. The 54-hole tournament was conducted at the par-72 Isleta Eagle Golf Course in Albuquerque on May 27-30.

Tolan, who finished five shots clear of the field, fed off the energy of five birdies and a hole-in-one on the par-3 sixth hole to run away with the championship.

"It sort of shook me up a little bit, but I birdied the next hole. It was great," said Tolan. "I finally scored well, and that's what I've been struggling to do for a long time. Nothing really that fancy or great. I just put it in the hole."

Will Osborne of Wichita Falls, Texas, charged to the second place position after carding a 5-under-par 67, the low round of the day. Mitchell McCaughan of Sumner, Wash., and Jace Moore of Southlake, Texas, finished in a tie for third place, six shots behind Tolan. David McDaniel of Tucson, Ariz., rounded out the top 5.

In the Girls Division, Amanda Blumenherst of Scottsdale, Ariz., fired a 1-under-par 71 to hold off Amie Cochran of Torrance, Calif., and Michaela Cavener of Ponca City, Okla., by two shots. Blumenherst, who came from five shots behind after the first round to claim the title, sank a 15-foot par putt on the closing hole to put a stranglehold on the victory.

The putt occurred after Cochran, who was one shot back at the time, knocked her second shot to within 10 feet on the par-4 No. 18. Blumenherst missed the green to the right but was able to save par after sinking the dramatic putt. Cochran bogeyed the hole to finished tied for second with first-round leader Cavener.

"Its always nice when you can finish on a good note. I putted well and hit the ball solid and it was just a pretty good round all together," said Blumenherst, who placed second at the Thunderbird International Junior last week in Phoenix. This was her first victory of 2003 and her third career national win.

For more information on the AJGA Southwestern Junior Classic, please contact tournament director Andrew Greenfield at (770) 601-8922.