KOEPKA AND WILLIAMS SHARE LEAD AFTER FIRST ROUND IN DOTHAN
Pair cards matching 69s to take one-stroke lead
DOTHAN, Ala. â€” Brooks Koepka of Wellington, Fla., and Thomas Williams of St. Paul, Minn., carded matching 69s to sit atop the leaderboard at the Ashworth Junior at Highland Oaks following the first round of play.
Conducted by the American Junior Golf Association at Highland Oaks Golf Course, the Ashworth Junior at Highland Oaks is a 36-hole stroke play event featuring junior golfers from 21 states and Canada.
The AJGA's Ashworth Junior Series is a series designed specifically for first-time AJGA members or those members who have not yet participated in an AJGA Open event, AJGA Invitational or Nike Golf Junior All-Star Series event in the current or previous calendar year.
Koepka carded 10 fairways and 13 greens on his way to a 35-34â€”69 to put him in a tie with Williams. The 2008 graduate is playing in his second AJGA event.
â€śEverything went pretty well today and I'm happy with today's round,â€ť said Koepka. â€śI hit my driver in play all day.â€ť
Koepka's round was highlighted by an eagle on the 515-yard, par-5 fourth hole.
â€śThat really got everything going,â€ť commented Koepka.
Koepka hopes to play solid golf tomorrow in order to capture his first career AJGA victory.
Sixteen-year-old Williams, playing in his first AJGA event, birdied all of the par-5s at Highland Oaks helping him to tie for the lead.
â€śI thought I played pretty well today,â€ť said the 2008 graduate. â€śThis tied my lowest round ever in a junior tournament and I'm pretty happy with it overall.â€ť
The Gopher State native is satisfied with today's round but is looking to improve for tomorrow.
â€śI felt like I was loosing my driver at the end of today's round,â€ť remarked Williams. â€śI have a few things to work on, but I think if I play well again it will put me in a good position for tomorrow.â€ť
Matthew Krembel of Shalimar, Fla., sits in third following a 2-under-par 70. He is followed in fourth by Michael Hicks of Newnan, Ga. at 35-36â€”71. John Higgins of Denver, N.C., and Colin Richwine of Marrero, La. are tied for fifth after carding even-par 72s.
The American Junior Golf Association is a 501c(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 (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, which enters its third decade of support, became the inaugural AJGA Premier Partner in 2004.
AJGA alumni have risen to the top of amateur, collegiate and professional golf. More than 200 former AJGA juniors currently play on the PGA and LPGA Tours and have compiled more than 280 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.
The final round will be an 8:30 a.m. shotgun start. For more information on the Ashworth Junior at Highland Oaks, please contact tournament headquarters at (334) 712-2820.