College Prep Series at UF
May 7-8, 2016
Hurricane Swung Through the Swamp
On Thurs., May 5, the Hurricane Junior Golf Tour traveled to Gainesville, Fla., to host the College Prep Series at UF. With great weather in the forecast, the kids were ready to swing through the swamp. Saturday was chilly to start out the tournament, but things quickly warmed up and it turned into a beautiful breezy day. On Sunday, the field of over 90 players battled to finish their round before the sun beating down on them became too hot. The HJGT would like to thank the Mark Bostick Golf Course staff for allowing us to host the second of two great events at UF. A full field meant the top boys and girls between the ages of 14-18 received AJGA Performance Stars, while all age divisions also received Junior Golf Scoreboard ranking. Golfweek ranking was awarded to boys and girls 14-18. Winners in each age division received an invitation to the 2016 Tour Championship on Dec. 3-4, while the top three in each division received invitations to the 2016 Druh Belts Mid Season Invitational at Chateau Elan on June 11-13.
Boys 16-18 Division
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Austin Aliff[/caption] Austin Aliff of Vero Beach, Fla., was the winner of the Boys 16-18 division thanks to consistent play on both days, posting a two-day total of 144 (72-72, +4). The second round proved to be more tumultuous for Aliff as he battled the quick greens all day but still was able to birdie holes two and three and carry the lead throughout the rest of the tournament. Ryder Sutcliffe of Jupiter, Fla., was not far behind, finishing only two strokes behind the leader despite tying him in the second round. Sutcliffe’s big mistake came on the par-5 seventh hole where he found himself well off the fairway and was not able to recover, ultimately double-bogeying the hole. Taking third place out of 31 was Anthony Colombino of Palm Beach Gardens, Fla., who was in the hunt for first entering the final nine holes but was not able to keep his strong play up and finished with a back nine 40 on Sunday. He At 150 Colombino (74-76) tied B Davis Smith (75-75) for third place.
Boys 14-15 Division
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Elliott Wright[/caption] With a half dozen players within the lead heading into the final round, Parker Miller of Fleming Island, Fla., was able to fire a Sunday low 76 for a two-day total of 155. Despite his strong play that showed incredible touch around the greens, he was not able to edge out the eventual winner, Elliott Wright, of Ponte Vedra Beach, Fla. Wright demonstrated incredible resolve after struggling through his first nine on Sunday that included a double-bogey on the par-5, third, one of the easier holes on the course. Despite struggling with the slick greens on Sunday, Wright was able to birdie two of the last four holes to post a two day total of 153 (75-78) and a two-stroke victory. Miller took second place out of 12 and edged out Eric Poehlman (83-74), who took third place.
Boys 11-13 Division
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Jonathan Griz[/caption] This week’s winner in the Boy’s 11-13 age division was Jonathan Griz of Hilton Head Island, S.C. After winning the Bluffton Junior Open last week, Griz was able to keep the hot streak with an impressive two-day total of 146 (75-71) for his sixth HJGT victory, the most of any player on tour. He struggled through the last three holes on Saturday going bogey-bogey-double. However, he demonstrated the true mark of a champion by being able to play well through the final holes on Sunday, even making birdie on the short par-4 17th to edge out three-time winner Brenden Valdes of Orlando, Fla. Valdes (78-72) was a fierce competitor all weekend and was paired with Griz all weekend, nearly matching him shot for shot. His inconsistent play on Sunday included seven bogeys and five birdies and he was not able to hit as many greens as Griz, which ultimately cost him the top spot. Andrew Clark of Winter Park, Fla., (81-74) took third place out of 14.
Boys 10U Division
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The young gentlemen in the Boys 10 and under division were not fazed by the Division I collegiate course this weekend and played some stellar golf. They were able to hit some incredible shots, putting approach shots within five feet consistently, but the player who came out on top was Gavin Fleming of Jacksonville, Fla. He showed tremendous precision by making birdie on two of the par-3s on Sunday, both resulting in tap-in putts. Fleming (83-82) won by 18 to claim his fourth HJGT victory this season. The other two in the division, Ethan Keen (94-101) of West Palm Beach, Fla. and Rogelio Gerena (94-89) of Peachtree City, Ga., played admirably throughout the weekend but were unable to avoid the big numbers like Fleming.
Girls 14-18 Division
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Jennifer Zhou[/caption] Kendall Johnson of Plant City, Fla., came into Sunday with a one-stroke lead after posting an impressive two-over-par 72 on Saturday. Her second round did not goes as well as her putts were no longer sinking, leading to a second-round 81. Eventual winner Jennifer Zhou of Longwood, Fla., played consistently all weekend, posting a two-day total of 147 (73-74). Her iron play was stellar, especially on a particularly windy Saturday. She was able to hit many greens and put herself in a position to score well on almost each and every hole. Tying for third place out of 26 were Floridians Alisa Clark (80-74) of Navarre and Katie You (75-79) of Windermere.
Girls 13U Division
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Georgia Ruffolo[/caption] Winner Georgia Ruffolo of Tampa, Fla., played brilliantly during her first round in shooting 74, the low score in the division for the weekend by six strokes. She posted back-to-back birdies on Nos. six and seven on Saturday thanks to some incredible putting. Her putter cooled off on Sunday, but her win was never in doubt, even with an 80. Alex Crafton of Lake Mary, Fla., was able to literally match Ruffolo shot for shot on Sunday, often times finding their balls lying right next to each other in the fairway off the tee. Crafton carded scores of 81 and 83 to take second out of five. In third was Kaitlyn Schroeder (91-84) of Jacksonville, Fla.
Weather for May 7-8, 2016
Round 1: Low 55, High 82. Chilly Morning, Sunny Skies, Wind 10-15 mph Round 2: Low 58, High 88. Clear and Warm, Wind 0-5 mph
Tournament Division Yardages
Boys 16-18: 6,421Yards Boys 14-15: 6,421 Yards Girls 14-18: 5,528 Yards Boys 11-13: 5,528 Yards Girls 13U: 4,951 Yards Boys 10U: 4,921 Yards