NORMAN, OKLA. - The champion's trophy from the inaugural
AJGA Ashworth Postseason Junior at Norman remains in the same
area code as Oklahoma native Jeff Cox of Norman earns the
bragging rights as well as his first-ever national victory
Sunday after carding two-over-par 72 in the final round at
his home course Belmar Golf Club.
Conducted by the American Junior Golf Association, the Ashworth Postseason Junior at Norman featured 79 junior boys from 22 states. Twenty players in the field hailed from the Sooner State.
The 2004 high school graduate, who qualified for this tournament by winning a local qualifier conducted by the Norman Convention Visitors Bureau (CVB), fired a career best of 66 in Saturday's first round and maintained the lead throughout the final day to finish with rounds of 38-34-72.
"I definitely played more aggressive yesterday and thought way too much today," Cox said. "I started off well with a par and birdie, but then just began rushing everything. It took me until No. 9 before I started to calm down again."
Cox, who attends North Norman High School, garnered three birdies on Nos. 2, 10 and 16 and five bogeys, three of which were made on the front nine.
"My putter was the only thing that worked for me," the 17-year-old said. "The playing conditions were a lot different than yesterday. The pin positions were much harder and the wind was blowing in a different direction."
Commenting about his overall performance for the weekend, Cox was more than pleased.
"It really hasn't sunk in yet," he said. "This win really means a lot especially since this is my home course."
Finishing second behind Cox with rounds of 71-73-144 was Stuart Golf of Centerville, Utah. Texas native Tyler Talman of Plano claimed third place with a tournament total of five-over-par 145. Rounding the top 5 were Daniel Stevens of Austin, Texas, and Jordan Carpenter of Fayetteville, Ga., at 146.
The tournament awarded three AJGA Open tournament exemptions to the medallist, two to those who placed in the top five, and one to those who finished in the top 15. In an effort to give the most future playing opportunities to juniors, the event did not have a playoff to break ties.
The AJGA Ashworth Preseason/Postseason Junior Series is a boys-only series designed specifically for first-time AJGA members or those who have yet to compete in an AJGA Open event, AJGA Invitational or AJGA Nike Golf Junior All-Star Series event. For those who are eligible, participation is limited to one Preseason event and one Postseason event per calendar year as long as the junior did not participate in any of the above events.
The series is now in its fourth year and has grown to 10 events nationally, all conducted by the AJGA. Other Postseason events were also conducted in Rancho Mirage, Calif., Hagerstown, Md., Gainesville, Fla., and South Padre Island, Texas.
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, the largest association of its kind, has a junior membership of approximately 5,000 juniors (boys and girls ages 13-18) from 50 states and 30 foreign countries.
For more information about the AJGA Ashworth Postseason Junior at Norman, or any AJGA tournament, please contact the Association's National Headquarters at (877) 373-2542.