THUNDERBIRD INTERNATIONAL JUNIOR
Grayhawk Golf Club
May 28-31, 2004
THREE TIED IN BOYS DIVISION AT 4-UNDER-PAR GOING INTO THE FINAL ROUND
SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. –Amid hot conditions, George Gandranata of Jakarta, Indonesia, and Brendan Gielow of Muskegon, Mich., remained in the lead while Christopher Ward of McKinney, Texas, moved up the leader board after the second round of the Thunderbird International Junior Sunday. In the Girls Division, Julieta Granada of Asuncion, Paraguay, jumped ahead with a second round of 67 to sit at 7-under-par 137.
Conducted by the American Junior Golf Association, the 54-hole stroke play invitational features 100 players ages 12-18 from 21 states and 12 foreign countries. Of these 100 players, 76 are Rolex Junior All-Americans, including Rolex Junior Player of the Year and defending boys champion Brian Harman of Savannah, Ga.
In the Boys Division, Gandranata, who sits at 68-72—140, had four birdies on his round including back-to-back birdies on Nos. 14 and 15. The 18-year-old had a great up-and-down on No. 18, which nearly took him out of the lead.
“Going into the final round my confidence remains high and I would like to play as well as I did today,” said the Rolex Junior All-American Gandranata.
Gielow, 16-years-old, had a good stretch of birdies on Nos. 4, 6 and 9 which helped him on the back nine where he had two bogeys. The Rolex Junior All-American has a two-day total of 68-72—140.
“My irons worked very well today,” said Gielow. “If I stay focused tomorrow, I hopefully will be able to end the tournament strong.”
The other leader in the Boys Division, Ward, has a two-day total of 74-66—140 and had seven birdies in his second round. The 16-year-old recently won his first AJGA event at the 2004 TaylorMade-adidas Golf Junior at The Woodlands.
Sitting one shot back off the lead at 3-under-par 141 is Robert Gates, Jr. of Gainesville, Fla. (76-66—141) and Ben Spickard of Roswell, Ga. (69-72—141).
In the Girls Division, Granada, who placed fifth at the event in 2003, set a new 36-hole tournament record for the Girls Division with a 137 total. The 17-year-old missed only two greens one of which was No. 6 where she got up-and-down after she flew the ball over the green and hit a flop shot to three feet for par. She had five birdies including three in a row on Nos. 12, 13 and 14.
“I am hitting the ball well off the tee and putting better,” said Granada, a Rolex Junior All-American. “Hopefully I can play my own game tomorrow by playing shot-to-shot and staying focused.”
Scottsdale’s Amanda Blumenherst (74-66—140), broke the women’s course record at Grayhawk Golf Club with a round of 66. Blumenherst, along Esther Choe (70-70—140) of La Quinta, Calif., and In-Bee Park (69-71—140) of Eustis, Fla., remain three shots off the lead at 4-under-par 140.
The American Junior Golf Association is a 501©(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 largest association of its kind, the AJGA has a junior membership (boys and girls ages 12-18) of approximately 5,000 junior golfers from 50 states and 30 foreign countries.
Titleist, the AJGA’s National Sponsor, has been the catalyst and driving force behind the Association’s success since 1989. Rolex Watch USA, a supporter of the AJGA since 1983, became an AJGA Premier Partner in 2004.
AJGA alumni have risen to the top of amateur, collegiate and professional golf. More than 160 former AJGA juniors currently play on the PGA and LPGA Tours and have compiled more than 300 wins. AJGA alumni include Phil Mickelson, Tiger Woods, Davis Love III, Jim Furyk, Vicki Goetze-Ackerman, Grace Park, Cristie Kerr and Beth Bauer.
Final-round tee times will run from 7-9:08 a.m. off the Nos. 1 and 10 tees. For more information on the Thunderbird International Junior, contact tournament headquarters at (480) 502-3181.