LINDEN, MICH. – Andy Shiels of Rockford, Ill., took advantage of seven straight one-putts on the back nine to fire a 5-under-par 67 in the first-round of the Buick Junior Open presented by Golfweek.Dolores White of Lakeland, Fla., leads the Girls Division after shooting a first round 1-over-par 73.
Conducted by the American Junior Golf Association, the Buick Junior Open presented by Golfweek is a 54-hole stroke play tournament being held at Spring Meadows Country Club. Ninety-nine junior golfers from 16 states, including 38 Michigan natives are participating in the event.
Shiels, 18, finished the front nine at even-par and caught fire after making the turn.Shiels, whose best AJGA finish is a tie for third at the 2003 AJGA Chicago Junior at Boilingbrook, birdied Nos. 11, 13, 14, 15 and 16.Shiels carded a 31 on the back-side and credited his strong iron play and putting for his success.
“I was able to get my irons close and had several tap in birdies,” Shiels commented.“I have been lining up my putts with my putter the past few days and it has worked really well for me.”
Along with putting, Shiels mentioned the importance of his play on No. 6.He was able to sink a 10-foot putt for birdie and follow that up with another birdie on No.7, which got him back to even par through nine.
Last year’s third place finisher, Dan Doyle of Rochester, Mich., trails Shiels after shooting a 69 during the first round.Doyle, playing in the last AJGA event of his career, mentioned his comfort with the course, as a big reason for his success.
“The greens are in great condition and they roll really well,” Doyle said.“If you keep your driver in play, this course plays a lot easier.I like the way it plays to my game and I feel confident,” he said.
Pat Murphy of Pleasanton, Calif., Blake Furgerson of West Lake, Ohio, James Fahselt of San Diego, Calif., and Max Schechter of Rancho Santa Fe, Calif., are tied for third, after finishing with a 2-under-par 70.
White, coming off a win at last week’s First American Title Avila Junior in Tampa, Fla., said she scored better than she played.
“I had 33 putts on the day, including 20 putts on the front,” the sixteen-year old White said.“I hit my driver well and was able to make five birdies which helped.I hit most of the greens and need to do the same the next two days,” she said.
Following White is Carly Truitt of Marysville, Ohio and Jordan Craig of Connellsville, Pa., who shot 74 and 75, respectively.
The second round of the Buick Junior Open presented by Golfweek begins on Wednesday at , off the first tee.
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 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 Buick Junior Open presented by Golfweek, please contact Tournament Director Allison Akin at (678) 227-9191.
The American Junior Golf Foundation is the primary recipient of all charitable giving to the AJGA and as such administers a variety of programs designed to compliment the AJGA and the members and families who make up our community. Learn more about these important programs and how your contributions to the Foundation secure the AJGA’s financial future for future generations to come.
The Achieving Competitive Excellence (ACE) Grant program provides financial assistance to junior golfers who wish to play in AJGA events. Its goal is to give top-flight golf opportunities to young golfers regardless of financial resources. This program helps to fulfill the AJGA’s mission of developing young men and women who aspire to earn college golf scholarships through competitive junior golf.
What is Leadership Links?
Leadership Links is a new program whereby the AJGA is able to further its mission to help develop young men and women by teaching charitable giving skills and service-oriented practices at an early age. This program gives juniors all the tools necessary to donate their time, talent and resources to local charities and the AJGA youth development programs. Please click here to learn more about the program and the different opportunities available.
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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.