Cold Snap Hits UF
On Thursday, January 21, the Hurricane Junior Golf Tour traveled to Gainesville, FL to host the College Prep Series at the Mark Bostick Golf Course at the University of Florida. With threats of cold weather approaching Florida, the players began to prepare themselves for the days ahead. Saturday, January 23rd, was one of the coldest days Florida has seen in awhile, with a temperature of 35 degrees when players hit the course. Within an hour into the tournament, the players began to face dropping temps and freezing rain. Surprisingly, no weather records for Gainesville were broken. Early Sunday morning, a freeze warning was issued for Alachua County for Sunday between 1 a.m. and 9 a.m. This pushed the original tee times back until 10 a.m. Sunday morning. On arrival to the course Sunday, the greens were covered in frost, pushing tee times back an additional hour. At 11:00 a.m., we were officially underway for the last day of the tournament with slightly chilly air, but beautiful blue, sunny skies. Also, the Hurricane Tour would like to send a special thanks to the University of Florida for allowing us to host our college prep series at their course. We will be back to the Mark Bostick Golf Course on May 7-8, so do not forget to register and we hope to see you there!
Boys 16-18 Division
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Samuel Anderson[/caption] Even with brutal winds, cold temperatures, and freezing rain to start round one, Takafumi Shimoji, of Suwanee, Ga., took an early lead over the pack when he began his round with eight pars in a row, leaving him at just one-over when he made the turn. To start his back nine, he took yet another jump when he birdied No. 1 to lock in the lead. Samuel Anderson, of Stoughton, Wis., was not going to let Shimoji hang on to that lead for long. Anderson made par on all but one hole on the front nine when Shimoji doubled the last hole of the round to leave them both tied at three-over-par (73). Round two started off with a frost delay, but that did not deter our intrepid golfers. With warmer weather upon us, Alberto Martinez of Weston, Fla., was able to come back strong when he shaved seven strokes off of his first-day total with twelve pars and two birdies which led to a 73. However, it was not enough to jump to first place, as Shimoji and Anderson battled it out for the lead. They were tied going into the last hole of the tournament. It came down to one putt, and Anderson was able to sink his birdie putt for an exciting victory. Anderson finished at ten-over-par (150) for first, Shimoji was right behind him at eleven-over (151) to finish second, and Martinez came in with an impressive comeback at thirteen-over (153) to round the top three.
Boys 14-15 Division
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Luke Gifford[/caption] In the Boys 14-15 division, we had a three-way tie on our leaderboard after a tough round one for our competitors. With the weather not cooperating, Luke Gifford, Arden Brake, and Garrett Tighe were able to secure dozens of pars that would make for a very competitive round two to see who would come out on top. Tighe started off strong sinking birdies on Nos. 1 and 3 put him in the lead. However, Gifford pulled ahead before the turn with eight pars and a birdie on No. 9 in his pocket to put him at a one-stroke lead over Tighe and a three-stroke lead over Brake. Gifford sunk another birdie on No. 12 to put him on top. This would prove to be a very close match until the very end when Brake bogeyed No. 18 versus a double bogey for Tighe. Gifford finished the two-day tournament at an impressive twelve-over-par (152), only four strokes ahead of Brake, who finished with a (156). Rounding out with a top-three finish was Garrett Tighe with a (157).
Boys 11-13 Division
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Jake Davis[/caption] Jake Davis of Gainesville, Fla., produced a very impressive score after round one. Davis tamed the wintry weather by coming in at four-over-par (74), giving him a 12-stroke lead going into round two. Davis held onto his lead and finished first, grabbing two more birdies on day two. Jake finished at 16-over for the two-day tournament (156). Payne Elkins, Gus Vickers, and Charles Lonsdale all played great golf and battled it out for both second and third place. Elkins latched onto a second-place finish (175), only one stroke ahead of Vickers (176).
Boys U10 Division
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Gavin Fleming[/caption] Gavin Fleming, of Jacksonville, Fla., proved that even at a young age, he can still produce an incredible finish after a rocky start due to Saturday’s playing conditions. Gavin had two birdies for the weekend and improved his round one finish by ten strokes. He was crowned champion of his division with a total of (184).
Girls 14-18 Division
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Erikah Neger[/caption] What an eventful weekend for or Girls 14-18 division! Not only did they have to deal with the crazy winter weather, but also a three-way tie for first that would lead to a sudden death playoff. Erikah Neger, Auston Kim, and Megan Schofill all finished with a two-day total of 162. In the playoff, Neger, the Oviedo, Fla., native emerged victorious by sinking a well-timed birdie, her lone birdie of the weekend. Schofill and Auston both made par to tie for second place.
Weather on January 23-24, 2016
Round 1: Low 30, High 46. Freezing Rain, Wind 5-15 mph
Round 2: Low 27, High 55. Early Morning Frost, Sunny Skies, Wind 0-5 mph
Tournament Division Yardages
Boys 16-18: 6,421 Yards
Boys 14-15: 6,421 Yards
Girls 14-18: 5,528 Yards
Boys 11-13: 5,528 Yards
Boys U10: 5,011 Yards