ROLEX GIRLS JUNIOR CHAMPIONSHIP
LPGA International â€“ Champions Course
Daytona Beach, Florida
June 14-17, 2004
FUTURE DEMON DEACON LEADS FIELD AFTER CAREER-LOW ROUND
Rolex Junior All-Americans abound at Rolex Girls Junior Championship
DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. â€“ Laura Crawford of Lancaster, S.C., picked a perfect time to post her career-low competitive round. Her 5-under-par 67 during the first round of the Rolex Girls Junior Championship was enough to claim the first-round lead by one stroke over Rolex Junior All-Americans Julieta Granada of Asuncion, Paraguay, and Sidney Burlison, of Salinas, Calif.
Conducted by the American Junior Golf Association, the 54-hole stroke-play invitational event is being held at LPGA Internationalâ€™s Champions Course, the same venue as the LPGAâ€™s Qualifying School. The event features 77 girls from 21 states and four foreign countries (Canada, Japan, Mexico and Paraguay) who were invited based on past top national junior golf tournament finishes.
The tournament, one of two girls-only AJGA majors, brings 19 Rolex Junior All-Americans including Florida natives Brittany Lincicome of Seminole, Jennifer Pandolfi of Navarre, Morgan Pressel of Boca Raton, and Delores White of Lakeland. Amanda Blumenherst of Scottsdale, Ariz., Granada, Lincicome and Pressel are all first-team Rolex Junior All-Americans.
Crawford, who signed a National Letter of Intent in November to play golf for Wake Forest University, credited her putting for her low score. Carding only 28 putts, Crawford posted six birdies with only one bogey in her second appearance at the Rolex Girls Junior Championship. On the 358-yard, par-4 first, Crawford sunk a lengthy putt for her fifth birdie of the day (she started on No. 10).
â€śIt was a 20-foot downhill putt,â€ť she said. â€śI just wanted to get it close.â€ť
Burlison was also pleased with her short game. In preparation for the event, she paid particular attention to practicing putts within six feet of the hole.
â€śI didnâ€™t miss a crucial putt from that range, which is confidence-boosting,â€ť said Burlison, who shot a 4-under-par 68.
Burlison qualified for the U.S. Womenâ€™s Open last year and will compete next Monday in California for a spot in the 2004 event.
Also tied for second place is Granada, who began her round with a birdie on the par-4 first. Her round included four other birdies and one bogey and was highlighted by hitting 14 of 14 fairways and netting only 28 putts.
Trailing Crawford, Burlison and Granada are Vicki Yi, 16, of Bogart, Ga., with a 69 and Mallory Hetzel of Summerville, S.C., and Pressel who each carded a 2-under-par 70.
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 has a membership (boys and girls ages 12-18) of approximately 5,000 junior golfers from 50 states and 30 foreign countries.
Titleist, the AJGAâ€™s National Sponsor, has been the catalyst and driving force behind the Associationâ€™s success since 1989. Rolex Watch USA, a supporter of the AJGA since 1983, became the inaugural AJGA Premier Partner in 2004.
Second-round tee times will begin at 7:30 a.m. Wednesday off the Nos. 1 and 10 tees. For more information about the Rolex Girls Junior Championship, please contact tournament headquarters at (386) 274-1549.