Barker goes low, holds on for win Daniel wins battle against Uhland
The Hurricane Junior Golf Tour traveled to Macon, Georgia on February 15-17 for the 54-Hole Challenge at Brickyard. Cold weather was prominent throughout the weekend, but 54 holes were completed by all four age divisions. Winners in all four divisions received an invitation to the 2014 Mid-Season Championship and Tour Invitational. National Junior Golf Scoreboard Rankings, South Carolina Junior Golf Association Heritage Points and Tarheel Youth Golf Association Points were awarded to all divisions. Additionally, the top 15 finishers received points towards year end honors which include state teams, ALL HJGT teams, and the Hurricane Cup.
At the end of the first round, Tyler Barker of Evans, GA was in sole possession of first place in the Boys 15-18 division after dropping the only under par round of the weekend. Barker fired a 71 in extremely cold and windy conditions that left the field mentally and physically exhausted. Barker started Saturday with nine straight pars and then bogied two early holes on his back nine before finishing with a birdie followed by an eagle. This gave him an overnight lead of six strokes which he would never relinquish. Barker finished the weekend as the field leader in par four scoring, back nine scoring, and most pars made. He finished the weekend with a total of 217. Brennan Bogdanovich from Suwanee, GA made things interesting heading into the final round on Monday, by posting an even par score of 72 on Sunday. However he would finish in second, five strokes behind Barker. Bogdanovich played the back nine at the Brickyard in 37 strokes each day, due in part to the momentum he gained coming off of hole nine each day. He also played par five at four under for the weekend, easily making it his best hole on the course. His dominance of hole nine also paved the road for him to lead the field in par five scoring at the conclusion of the weekend. Kyle Cottam of Knoxville, TN finished in third place after strong rounds of 79-78-76. Cottam led the field in par three scoring, playing the short holes at two under for the weekend. Kyle proved he could also play the long holes by dropping in an eagle on hole nine in the second round.
The Girl’s 15-18 division would provide the event with some drama in the final round on Monday when Emily Uhland from Jacksonville, FL tied Jordan Daniel of Newnan, GA. Daniel regained the lead on the 17th hole and knocked in a bogey putt on the 54th hole of the event to win by one stroke. It was her play in the first round that proved to be the difference. Daniel posted scores of 80-75-78 while Uhland shot 81-75-78. Daniel took advantage of the birdie holes that were available at Brickyard dropping in six birdies on the weekend, which led the field. Most of those birdies came on the back nine where she averaged two strokes better than the rest of the field. Uhland, on the other hand played better than most on the front side by about a stroke each day. Karson Stone of Thomasville, GA finished in third place despite starting nine shots out of that position on Monday. Stone had a long road back into the trophy ceremony after firing a 94 in the tough conditions of Saturday. She would bounce back with consecutive rounds of 80. Stone showed great perseverance and fight to get onto the podium.
In the Boy’s 11-14 division, Carson Whitton of Newnan, GA took the first round lead scoring an 85. Carson went wire-to-wire for the victory. He coasted to an 83 on Monday after lengthening his lead on Sunday with a 75. For the weekend, he led the field in birdies made, par three scoring, and back nine scoring. It was his ability to drop low scores on the back nine that opened up the large gap between him and the rest of the field. This included the 35 Whitton posted on Sunday afternoon. Ty Hutson of Metter, GA and Andrew Mora of Douglasville, GA finished in a tie for second with weekend totals of 256. Hutson was the field’s par five scoring leader, and excelled on the back nine firing an average of four strokes better than his front nine score each day. Mora’s score improved each day along with the conditions in which he was playing. Starting with a 91, Mora dropped seven strokes on Sunday and then three more on Monday to secure the tie for second.
Abigail Bolt of Woodstock, GA held a one stroke lead after 36 holes at the Brickyard. Cameron Daniel of Sharpsburg, GA would change that by firing a front nine 38 on Monday. That gave Cameron a seven shot advantage, which was all the cushion she needed to finish the 54th hole as the champion of the Girl’s 11-14 division. She finished the day with an 81, ten strokes better than her previous round and the only round posted in the 80’s for the division. Bolt would take second place with a final round 90. Skylar Thompson of Buford, GA took third place in the event. Thompson proved her toughness posting her best score of the weekend in the toughest conditions the players faced on Saturday. She finished with a weekend total 309.
Weather: Day 1- Low 30’s in the morning, 40’s in the afternoon. Windy, with gusts up to 30 mph Day 2- Mid 40’s up to 60’s in the afternoon. Mostly sunny all day Day 3- High 40’s up to low 70’s in the afternoon. Mostly sunny, slight breeze Tournament Yardage: Boys 15-18: 6,843 yards Boys 11-14: 6,148 yards Girls 15-18: 5,605 yards Girls 11-14: 5,605 yards About us: The Hurricane Junior Golf Tour (HJGT) was founded in 2008 with the intent of providing junior golfers between the ages of 11-18 an opportunity to play exceptional courses in a competitive environment. Golfers who participate on the tour will compete in one of four age divisions: Boys 15-18, Boys 11-14, Girls 15-18, and Girls 11-14. Based out of Jacksonville, FL, the HJGT administers events all across the nation, with stops in Florida, Georgia, South Carolina, North Carolina, Alabama, Tennessee, Kentucky, Ohio, Virginia, Pennsylvania, Maryland, New York, New Jersey, Indiana, and Connecticut. For more information regarding the 54 Hole Challenge at Brickyard, please visit our website at www.hjgt.org, call the Hurricane Junior Golf Tour headquarters at (904) 379-2697, or email firstname.lastname@example.org.