FIRST AMERICAN TITLE AVILA JUNIOR CLASSIC
Avila Golf & Country Club
July 12-15, 2004
KIM RUNS AWAY FROM FIELD AT AVILA FOR FIRST AJGA WIN
White wins second AJGA event in hometown
Tampa, Fla. – Lion Kim was already having a pretty good year, and after winning the First American Title Avila Junior Classic, it’s only getting better. The Lake Mary, Fla., native shot a final-round 73 to finish with a 214 tournament total and a four-stroke victory. Dolores White of Lakeland, Fla., finished with a tournament total of 71-74-75—220 to cruise to an eight-shot victory over the rest of the Girls Division.
Conducted by the American Junior Golf Association, the First American Title Avila Junior Classic featured 84 players, 66 boys and 18 girls, ages 12-18 from 13 states and Peru. The 54-hole stroke play event was held at the Avila Golf & Country Club.
After two third-place and a second-place finish already this year, Kim’s first AJGA win only strengthens his impressive list of accomplishments in 2004.
“This year is so different from last year—I’m much more confident this year, and I know I can stick it to within 10-feet if I want to,” said the 15-year old Kim. “My putting is still a little shaky, but the rest of my game feels great.”
Down one-stroke heading into Thursday’s final round, Kim found himself with a six shot lead at the turn. Feeling confident, his solid round of 37-36—73 was capped off by an eagle on the par-5, 500-yard No. 16.
“I knew right after I made my eagle putt that I had a good size lead on Tyler [Rucarean],” said Kim. “If I could just make par on Nos. 17 and 18, I knew I would have it. This win feels great—I just want to keep playing.”
Florida natives Justin Jones of Jacksonville and Cameron Knight of Dade City made strong final round moves by shooting 70 and 71, respectively. Jones’ tournament total of 218 put him four shots back of Kim in second place. Knight’s 221 total put him into a third-place tie with the second-round leader, Tyler Rucarean of Gainesville, Fla. Raj Nahal of Longwood, Fla., carded a final-round 76 to finish alone in fifth place with a 222 tournament total.
Playing just minutes from her home in Lakeland, Fla., Dolores White took command of the Girls Division lead on day one with a 71 and never looked back. It was the first AJGA win for White this year, and the second of her career.
“Its exciting because its basically my hometown—I had a lot of people here that I know and they were really supportive,” said the 16-year-old White. “I’ll be smiling a lot for the next couple of months.”
Like the Boys Division winner Kim, White also knew she was on her way to victory after No. 16.
“On the back nine, Jacqui [Concolino] started to make a run, and it was scary,” said White. “When Jacqui gets it going, she doesn’t stop. But when she uncharacteristically put one in the water on No. 16, I knew it was over.”
With tournament totals of 228, the Orlando native Concolino finished tied for second place with Jessica Yadloczky of Cassleberry, Fla. The finish is the fourth top-5 performance for Concolino and the third top-5 for Yadloczky this year.
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 largest association of its kind, the AJGA has a junior membership 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 the inaugural AJGA Premier Partner in 2004.
For more information on the First Amerian Title Avila Junior Classic or the AJGA, please call National Headquarters at (770) 868-4200.