Bluffton Junior Open – May 2-3, 2015
Garruppo holds off teammate
Toole finishes strong
Smith wins in 3 hole playoff
The Hurricane Junior Golf Tour (HJGT) traveled to Bluffton, South Carolina from May 2-3, 2015 for the Bluffton Junior Open. Players were blessed with beautiful sunny skies and mild temperatures all weekend. Top three place winners in all divisions received an invitation to the 2015 Mid-Season Invitational and 1st place winner in each age division received an invitation to the Tour Championship. Both Boys age divisions were ranked by the Junior Golf Scoreboard. Additionally, the top ten finishers in each division received points towards year end honors which include state teams, ALL HJGT teams and the Hurricane Cup.
Scores were tight in the Boys 15-18 Division after day one, with five players tied for the lead with a day one total of 76(+5). One of those players was our eventual division winner, Christian Garruppo from Pottersville, NJ who recorded a two day total of 145(+3) to hold off his fellow JPGA teammate Taylor Kay- Green of Needham, MA. Needham recorded a two day total of 147(+5). With scores so tight after day one many players were vying for that first place trophy. Brooks Dyess of Hilton Head Island, SC sat atop of the leader board after day one and felt that is where he belonged, that is before Garuppo came in to take the win. Dyess was consistent on the day finishing the round with a 71(E) and a two day total of 147(+5) to tie with Green. Garruppos strong putting and scrambling lead to his victory. With five birdies and eleven pars on the day Garruppo had the trophy in his sight. Ultimately this would be enough for him to hold off Green and Dyess who would end up tied for second place. Congratulations to our players on a tremendous weekend of golf!
With scores tight in our Girls 15-18 Division between Kayla Smith of Middleburg, FL and Samantha Bennett of Wake Forest, NC the winner of the division could not be determined through the final 18 holes . Smith would jump out to a one stroke lead after day one and the two would battle back and forth through day two to find our the eventual winner. Emotions were high as both girls found themselves trouble holes throughout the round. Although emotions were high, both players were able to string together four or five strong holes to make the final hole interesting. Down by two strokes with just one hole to play, Smith would have to be consistent with her shots to get the two strokes back. As the girls approached the green the pressure was on. Smith was able to string together some shots and a few puts to get her to strokes back to send the girls into a playoff. After struggling on the par 4 18th, the playoff would get interested as this was the hole that was selected by the committee. With both players missing important putts that would put pressure on the other, the girls would bogey the playoff hole consecutive times. Third time was a charm for Smith as she bombed her drive down the middle and stuck her approach shot within four feet of the cup. A birdie putt would seal the deal. Bennett, not down and out, was given life after Smith missed her birdie putt but would fall just short as she would go on to bogey the hole. Smith would take home the trophy with a par on the third playoff hole to give her a two day total of 162(+20). Congratulations to Sydney Abruzzino of Myrtle Beach, SC who finished in third and came home with her first top three finish of the year!
After day one in our Boys 13-14 Division only one player sat within five strokes of our leader, Jackson Toole of Vidalia, GA. With an impressive day one total of 70(-1) Toole knew it would be tough for the rest of the field to catch him. In order for him to take home the first place trophy he would have to keep his composure. With a booming drive off of the first tee and a front nine of 35(E) Toole looked to be headed straight to the podium. Two birdies on the back nine would add the fuel to the fire and Toole would take home the trophy pretty easily. While the first place trophy was pretty clear, the battle for second place had just begun. Ty Hutson of Metter, GA and Johnathan Griz of Hilton Head Island, SC sat just two strokes apart after day one. With that being said, day two would bring some excitement for the pair. A strong start to the day would give Griz a five stroke lead heading into the back nine. With a par on the ninth hole Hutson would gain a stroke back from Griz and never look back. Hutson went on to par eight of the next nine holes to record a 37(+1) on the final nine holes and a two day total of 152(+10) just one stroke better than Griz, who would take home the third place trophy. Congratulations to our Boys 13-14 Division on an exciting weekend of golf. Weather: Day 1- Low of 50 to high of 75, Sunny, winds 4-5 MPH Day 2- Low of 50 to high of 75, Sunny, winds 4-5 MPH Tournament Yardages: Boys 15-18-6,654 yards Boys 13-14-6,075 yards Girls 15-18-5,606 yards About us: The Hurricane Junior Golf Tour (HJGT) was founded in 2007 with the intention of providing junior golfers between the ages of 11-18 an opportunity to play exceptional courses in a competitive environment. The tour’s vision is to provide superb hospitality and make every event a memorable one. With play open to both males and females, nearly every junior golfer is eligible to participate on the Hurricane Junior Golf Tour. Currently the HJGT is the largest junior golf tour in the United States hosting more 2-day nationally ranked events than another other tour. The HJGT has been able to achieve this goal by running the most professional events and providing an exceptional value to all of our players and families over the last 8 years. There are several factors that set us apart from the competition which we call #TheHurricaneDifference. Based out of Jacksonville, FL, the HJGT administers events all across the country. In 2015 the HJGT will conduct events in Florida, Georgia, South Carolina, North Carolina, Alabama, Tennessee, Kentucky, Ohio, Virginia, Pennsylvania, Maryland, New York, New Jersey, Indiana, Illinois, Michigan, Louisiana, Mississippi, Massachusetts and Connecticut. Juniors will compete in 1 of 5 divisions which are: Boys 15-18, Boys 13-14, Boys 11-12, Girls 15-18, and Girls 11-14. Memberships for the 2015 season start at $139 and tournament fees range from $189-$229 for 36 hole events. The HJGT season is based on a calendar year and players earn points throughout the season towards year end honors beginning January 1. For more information regarding the HJGT, 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