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 PING PHOENIX JUNIOR
Moon Valley Country Club
Phoenix, Ariz.
August 19-22, 2004
 
BLUMENHERST’S SECOND 65 SEIZES TENTH AJGA VICTORY
Galletti Jr. overtakes host of second-round co-leaders for win


PHOENIX, Ariz. – Rolex Junior All-American Amanda Blumenherst of Scottsdale, Ariz., fired her second 7-under-par 65 of the tournament on Sunday for a 65-73-65, 13-under-par 203 tournament total and a 12-shot victory at the PING Phoenix Junior.  With five players tied atop the Boys Division leaderboard heading into Sunday, it was Roberto Galletti, Jr., who fought from two-shots off the pace to capture his second AJGA title of the year.

Conducted by the American Junior Golf Association, the PING Phoenix Junior featured 84 players, 63 boys and 21 girls, ages 12-18 from 18 states, Mexico, and the United Arab Emirates.  Thirty-three juniors were from the host state of Arizona.  The 54-hole stroke play event was held at the Moon Valley Country Club for the first time.

After what she deemed a disappointing second-round 73, Blumenherst came out firing on Sunday with five birdies on the front nine.  She hit 10 fairways and 16 greens on her way to a total of eight birdies on the day.

“I have confidence in my game, and the course really fit my tee shots and iron play well,” the 17-year-old Blumenherst said.  “My putting was on this week as well—I really got a good feel for the speed of the greens.”

The win is the tenth AJGA victory for Blumenherst and the fourth this year.  She also won the McDonald’s Betsy Rawls Girls Championship, the PING Indianapolis Junior, and the AJGA Southwestern Junior.

California’s Jennie Lee finished the tournament with an impressive 1-under-par 215 to earn second place honors.  Esther Choe of La Quinta, Calif., and Taylore Karle of Scottsdale, Ariz., finished with matching 220 tournament totals for a share of third place.

Playing a solid and conservative round allowed Galletti Jr., who entered the round two strokes behind the leaders, to earn one of only four under-par scores in the Boys Division during the final round.  The bogey-free 18 holes put the 16-year-old where he needed to be to capture his second AJGA victory carding a 71-70-71—212.  

“I haven’t really been playing my best all week, but I did just well enough to stay in contention.  I didn’t know I was even in the running until I heard from a fellow competitor on the eleventh hole,” Galletti remarked.  “I kept my mind on my shots and was able to stay relaxed throughout the rest of the round.”

Galletti’s championship clinching round included 17 pars and a birdie on No. 8 to bring him to 1-under on the day.

Second-round co-leader Philip Francis of Scottsdale, Ariz., carded a 2-over-par 74 for a 70-69-74—213 tournament total and sole possession of second place.  Fellow second-round co-leader Kyle Nielsen of Lake Havasu City, Ariz., finished alone in third place at 214 after his final-round 3-over-par 75.  An even-par 72 by Drew Kittleson of Scottsdale, Ariz., and a 1-under-par 71 by Rickie Fowler of Murrieta, Calif., earned them each a share of fourth place with tournament totals of 1-under-par 215.

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 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 about the PING Phoenix Junior, please contact AJGA national headquarters at (770) 868-4200.