Orlando Junior Shootout
March 5-6, 2016
On Thurs., March 3, The HJGT traveled to Lake Mary, Fla., for our Orlando Junior Shootout, being held at Timacuan Golf and Country Club. Our players could not have asked for a more perfect weather weekend, with warmth and blue, sunny skies. The HJGT would like to thank Timacuan's staff for aiding in what was a terrific event. Winners in each age division received an invitation to the 2016 Tour Championship on Dec. 3-4. The top three finishers in each division were also awarded exemptions into the 2016 Druh Belts Mid Season Invitational at Chateau Elan on June 11-13.
Boys 16-18 Division
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Linus Samuelsson[/caption] Linus Samuelsson played some impressive golf in both rounds to claim the title in the Boys 16-18 division. Samuelsson recorded three birdies on the front nine and an impressive five on the back nine to finish with a four-under-par 68 in round one. On Sunday, Samuelsson proved to be a force to be reckoned with after shooting three birdies and an eagle on the front nine to put him at eight-under total at the turn. Samuelsson went on to birdie two more holes on the back nine to finish with a 70 in round two and nine strokes ahead of Ryan Kei for the tournament. Kei finished in red numbers in round one with a 70 to give Samuelsson a run for his money during round one. Kei could not keep up the pace in round two, but still was able to hold on to second place with a two-day total of 149. Ren Morishita of Orlando recorded six birdies and an eagle to tie for third with a 150 total (76-74). Stuart, Fla., native Callum Brown (76-74), fresh off of a victory at the HJGT's Space Coast Junior Open last weekend, recorded five birdies en route to tying Morishita for third out of 33.
Boys 14-15 Division
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Bo Peng[/caption] The Boys 14-15 division was tightly contested, requiring a sudden-death playoff to determine a champion. Lake Mary native Bo Peng held on to the title in his hometown after draining a par on the second hole of the sudden death playoff top edge out Jayson Iten of Naples, Fla. Peng recorded four birdies and an eagle in round one to post an even-par 72. Cole Anderson of Camden, Maine, stayed tied with Peng after round one with two birdies in his pocket. Peng started off round two strong at one-under-par on the front nine. Iten and Anderson were only one stroke behind Peng at the turn. Iten surged with three consecutive birdies on the back nine to post 71 in round two and catching Peng at 145. Anderson finished with five birdies for the tournament en route to a 75 and a 147 total to take third place out of 21.
Boys 11-13 Division
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Brendan Valdes[/caption] Brendan Valdes led after round one and did not look back. The Orlando native recorded five birdies in round one to post a scorching one-under-par round of 71. On Sunday, Valdes cooled off a little bit in posting a 77, but managed to hang on for a two-stroke victory over Jonah Leach of Windermere, Fla. Leach recorded five birdies on the weekend and posted scores of 73 and 77. Aaron Zhang (74-79) of Lake Mary recorded an impressive eight total birdies to take third place out of seven.
Boys 10U Division
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Jonathan Elter[/caption] Our Boys 10U division consisted of Jonathan Elter, of Naples, Fla., and Robert Stephens of St. Simons Island, Ga. Both handled the demands of Timacuan excellently. Elter improved his first round total by six strokes to take first place with a 166 for the weekend and his second HJGT victory in as many weeks. Stephens also improved on day two, shaving five strokes off to post a 183.
Girls 14-18 Division
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Karoline Tuttle[/caption] The Girls 14-18 division provided for yet another exciting sudden-death playoff match, this tme between Karoline Tuttle and Amy Zhang. Tuttle, playing in her hometown of Lake Mary, recorded two birdies in round one to put her at one-over-par 73, three strokes ahead of Zhang. Zhang, also from Lake Mary, posted a 76. In round two, both girls were off to the races to see who would claim the title. With a tough back nine, Tuttle finished round two at four-over, giving Zhang a chance to take the lead. Zhang recorded three birdies on the round and played the back nine in even par to catch Tuttle for first. Tuttle staved off a hard-charging Zhang in the playoff, draining a par on the second playoff hole to seal the deal. Both finished regulation at five-over-par 149 for the tournament. Taking third place out of 17 with not one, but two, eagles and a birdie to post the round of the division was Siyan Chen of Howie in the Hills, Fla., who posted a 72 en route to a 152 total.
Girls 13U Division
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Morgan Ellison[/caption] Morgan Ellison, Sophia Mia Blatter-Rickers, and Bela Mead composed the Girls 13 and under division. All three girls stayed within a few strokes of each other throughout much of the action, making for a competitive two-day tournament. Ellison of Peachtree City, Ga., improved by nine strokes from day one. This allowed her to claim victory with a two-day total of 189. Blatter-Rickers of El Portal, Fla., improved her score by five strokes and Mead of Aventura, Fla., improved by an impressive eleven strokes, which led to a tie for second place at 207.
Weather for March 5-6
Round 1: Low 54, High 73. Sunny Skies, Wind 4-7 mph Round 2: Low 54, High 75. Sunny Skies, Wind 7-12 mph
Tournament Division Yardages
Boys 16-18: 6,600 Yards Boys 14-15: 6,600 Yards Boys 11-13: 5,600 Yards Boys 10U: 4,660 Yards Girls 14-18: 5,600 Yards Girls 13U: 5,224 Yards