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The Links at Shirley
Shirley, New York
August 12, 2003

Creamer alone atop Girls Division leaderboard

SHIRLEY, N.Y. - Alex Snickenberger of Wellesley, Mass., sits atop the Boys Division with a 2-under-par 70 after the first round of the Lessing's AJGA Classic on Tuesday. In the Girls Division, Paula Creamer of Pleasanton, Calif., holds a one-stroke lead at 2-under-par 70.

Conducted by the American Junior Golf Association, the Lessing's AJGA Classic will take place August 12-14 at The Links at Shirley. The three-round event features an 84- player field, 66 boys and 18 girls, with 38 participants from New York.

The 17-year-old Snickenberger started his first round on fire with five birdies on the front nine to go 4-under-par 32. He then cooled off on the back nine and finished at 2-under-par 70.

"I played pretty well," Snickenberger said. "I made a lot of saves and I'm pleased with an opening round 70."
Tied for second place behind Snickenberger are Tarik Can of New York, N. Y. and Larry Haertel of Greenwich, Conn., at even-par 72.

Can, 18, finished his first round with four birdies and four bogeys and attributes his score to his short game.

"I didn't hit my driver well," Can said. "My short game was really good today, that's what saved me."

Haertel was off to a slow start after he hit into the water on hole No. 3 but came back strong to finish the front nine 1-over-par 37. Haertel wrapped up his first round by firing a 1-under-par 35 on the back nine.

"I hit a lot of greens," Haertel said. "I wasn't hitting the ball too close with my irons but my putter was working well and that helped on the back nine."

Rounding out the top five in the Boys Division were Brett Mormann of Santa Barbara, Calif., with a 1-over-par 73 in fourth place and tied for fifth place are Billy Hanes of Elma, N.Y. and Brandon Mitchel of Port Jefferson, N.Y. at 2-over-par 74.

In the Girls Division Creamer holds a one-stroke lead over Megan Grehan of Mamaroneck, N.Y.

The 16-year-old Creamer played consistent golf and finished her first round with two birdies and no bogeys.

"I missed a lot of putts," Creamer said. "I had too many birdie opportunities that I didn't convert on. I'm going to work on my pitching and putting for Wednesday and Thursday."

Grehan, 14, used both a smooth stroke and good tempo to stand alone in second place after the first round.

"I was swinging well today and hit a lot of greens," Grehan said. "This was the first time in a while I could stand over a putt and feel like I could make it."

Stephanie Connelly of Pasadena, Md., Nannette Hill of Pelham Manor, N.Y. and Susannah Aboff of Huntington, N.Y. round out the top three in the Girls Division at 4-over-par 76.

Second-round tee times will begin at 6:00-10:03 a.m. on Wednesday, August 13 off the No. 1 tee at The Links at Shirley. For more information on the Lessing's AJGA Classic, call tournament headquarters at (631) 395-7272.