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Pine Needles Lodge & Golf Club
Southern Pines, N.C. • August 11 - 14
Kirk’s 4-under-par 67 at Pine Needles Lodge & Golf Club leads Girls Division

SOUTHERN PINES, N.C. — Chase Parker of Augusta, Ga., leads the Boys Division of the Golf Pride Junior Classic after a round of 3-under-par 68 on Tuesday. Katie Kirk of Davidson, N.C., is atop the Girls Division after a 4-under-par 67 at Pine Needles Lodge & Golf Club.

Conducted by the American Junior Golf Association, the Golf Pride Junior Classic is a 54-hole stroke-play event being held at Pine Needles Lodge & Golf Club, the host to three U.S. Women’s Opens in the past 12 years. The tournament field consists of 75 boys and 24 girls, ages 12-18, from 15 states. The Boys Division is playing the par-71 course at 6,902 yards, while the Girls Division is being played at 6,002 yards.

Parker holds a one-stroke lead over three players entering the second round. His opening round featured six birdies and three bogeys.

“I hit the ball really well today,” Parker said. “I actually could’ve gone lower. A lot of my birdie putts were tap-ins.”

Sitting in a three-way tie for second at 2-under-par 69 are Michael McGowan of Southern Pines, N.C., Evan Beck of Virginia Beach, Va., and Mike Genovese of Pensacola, Fla. In a seven-way tie for fifth place at 1-under-par 70 are Robert Register of Burlington, N.C., Zachary Blair of Ogden, Utah, Ben Kohles of Cary, N.C., Bo Andrews of Raleigh, N.C., Patrick Lundy of Little River, S.C., Grayson Murray also of Raleigh, and Paul Howell of Wilson, N.C.

On a day when no other players in the Girls Division broke par, Kirk’s round that featured five birdies and one bogey gives her a six-stroke lead after the first round.

“I missed only two greens and putted really well,” Kirk said. “It was the best round I’ve ever had.”

Tied for second place at 2-over-par 73 are Christina Miller of Bradenton, Fla., Courtney Gunter of Matthews, N.C., and Victoria Kiser of Orlando, Fla.

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 an annual junior membership (boys and girls ages 12-18) of approximately 5,000 junior golfers from 49 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 is in its third decade of AJGA support, became the inaugural AJGA Premier Partner in 2004. In 2007, after 12 years of support, Polo Ralph Lauren became the AJGA's second Premier Partner.

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 Tiger Woods, Phil Mickelson, Jim Furyk, Stewart Cink, Davis Love III, Cristie Kerr, Pat Hurst, Paula Creamer, Brittany Lincicome, Morgan Pressel and Julieta Granada.

The second round of the Golf Pride Junior Classic will be an 8 a.m. shotgun start Wednesday at Pine Needles Lodge & Golf Club. For more information, please call AJGA Tournament Headquarters at (910) 692-7111, ext. 2222, or visit the AJGA Web site,