SUMRALL CLAIMS FIRST AJGA VICTORY AT FOX HILLS
Martin wins Girls Division in commanding fashion
Mishicot, Wis. — Adam Sumrall of South Bend, Ind., captured the Boys Division title at the Nike Golf Junior at Fox Hills with a final round 1-over-par 73 for a tournament total of 217. Kaira Martin of Paradise Valley, Ariz., fired a 3-over-par 75 to win the Girls Division by seven strokes with a tournament total 226.
Conducted by the American Junior Golf Association, the Nike Golf Junior at Fox Hills was a 54-hole stroke play event held at Fox Hills Resort — The National Course. The tournament featured 68 boys and 19 girls from 22 states and Mexico. The Nike Golf Junior All-Star series allows players ages 12-15 to develop their skills and earn entry into other AJGA tournaments.
Sumrall entered the final round three shots off of the lead. Although nervous at the start of the day, the 14-year-old grew more comfortable as he played the front nine. He made three consecutive birdies on Nos. 4, 5 and 6.
“I just wanted to play normal today and hit the best shots possible,” Sumrall said. “I hit the ball well today and that helped a lot.”
Sumrall had difficulty keeping that momentum going on the back nine, where he missed more greens and fought to get up-and-down to save pars. Sumrall credited his short game for allowing him to maintain his low score throughout the back side and was pleased with his strong putting performance. The win is Sumrall's first AJGA victory.
Three players tied for second place in the Boys Division. Cory Whitsett of Houston, Juan Pablo Hernandez of Mexico City, Mexico, and Anthony Aicher of Wausau, Wis., each finished one shot off the lead with tournament totals of 218. Jordan McLaurin of Ironton, Mo., took sole possession of fifth place with a three-day total of 219.
In the Girls Division, Martin's 75 consisted of a 39 on the front side and a 36 on the back nine. The 13-year-old headed into the final round with a two-stroke lead, but got off to a shaky start, making bogey on hole Nos. 1 and 3. She was able to calm her nerves and made par on 12 of the remaining 15 holes.
“I hit a lot of fairways today, and that really helped me,” Martin said. “I just wanted to try my hardest and I think I did.”
Martin's strong short game was particularly evident on the par-4 12th hole. Her second shot hit the flagstick and lipped out, leaving her a tap-in putt for birdie. It was Martin's first birdie of the day and gave her momentum as she headed to the final holes.
Christine Meier of Rochester Hills, Mich., took sole possession of second place with a three-day total of 233. Shannon Warner of Livonia, Mich., Louisa Shu of West Bloomfield, Mich., and Meredith Swanson of Roanoke, Va., tied for third place with tournament totals of 237.
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, the largest Association of its kind, 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 the inaugural 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, Mike Weir, Charles Howell III, Jim Furyk, Dottie Pepper, Grace Park, Cristie Kerr and Beth Bauer.
For more information about the Nike Golf Junior at Fox Hills, call national headquarters at (770) 868-4200.