AJGA LOCKTON KANSAS CITY
Nicklaus Golf Club at LionsGate
Overland Park, Kansas
July 27, 2003
10 BOYS AND FOUR GIRLS QUALIFY
Atkinson, Barton and Hoeper take top spots
OVERLAND PARK, Kan. - Bradley Atkinson
of Rantoul, Ill., Ellen Hoeper of Kansas City, Mo., and Lila
Barton of Dallas managed to go low despite the sweltering
Kansas City heat, shooting 69 and 72s respectively. Atkinson
took top honors in the Boys Division; while Hoeper and Barton
shared the top spot in the Girls Division. Nine boys and three
girls join Atkinson, Hoeper and Barton as they move into tournament
Conducted by the American Junior Golf Association, Sunday's
shotgun qualifier featured a field of 78 boys and 13 girls
from thirteen states.
Atkinson, 17, carded four birdies compared
to one bogey en route to his 3-under-par 69.
Atkinson credits his iron-play for his success Sunday. With
bunker shots on Nos. 1, 7, 15, 16 and 18, Atkinson says he
was hitting the greens from every angle.
"I was making great contact with the ball today,"
Atkinson said. "I think I hit every green, even from
In his second career AJGA event, Atkinson looks to maintain
"My goal is to keep it around par," Atkinson said.
"I think I could go lower if I make a few more putts,
but I'm not going to push it. I just want to play well this
Josh Bain of Abilene, Texas, Sasan Shahi of Laguna Niguel,
Calif., and KeeDae Lee of Plano, Texas, finished tied for
second after posting matching rounds of 1-under-par 71.
Fifth place went to five boys who shot even-par 72: Matthew
Gencarelli of Leawood, Kan., Dan Swomley of Hudson, Iowa,
John Sutko of Omaha, Neb., Linc Townsend of Stillwater, Okla.,
and Charlie Hendrickson of Galloway, Ohio. Ben Fox of Studio
City, Calif., earned the final qualifying spot via a 2-hole
sudden-death playoff with five other competitors.
In the Girls Division, putting was the name of the game for
13-year-old Lila Barton and 16-year-old Ellen Hoeper who tied
for top honors at even-par 72.
Barton carded three birdies despite one bogey and a double,
and says her game is really intact right now.
"My short game was working today-- actually, I played
solid all-around," Barton said. "I sunk a lot of
putts on the front and I was sticking it close to the pin
all day. I'm so excited about my putting, I think that's what
really made the difference today."
Coming off a second-place finish at the Nike Golf Junior All-Star
Classic at Cimarron, Barton looks to capitalize on her strengths
as she attacks the course throughout the week.
"I can play the course really well because it seems to
fit my game." Barton said. "I think I can do well
in this tournament."
Hoeper seemed unaffected by the heat and humidity as she carded
four birdies and four bogeys en route to a 72 finish.
Hoeper says her straight play in the fairways and putting
kept her low Sunday.
"I feel great going into the tournament," Hoeper
said. "I want to keep putting well and stay consistent."
Elisa Gomez of Carrollton, Texas shot a 4-over-par 76 for
second place, while the last spot went to Kelsey Kurtz of
Edmond, Okla., who won a sudden-death playoff after firing
The first round of the Lockton Kansas City Junior begins Tuesday
with tee times starting at 7 a.m. off the first tee.
For more information on the Lockton Kansas City Junior, please
contact tournament headquarters at (913) 402-1000.