Royal Lakes Junior Open

Newsome’s strong first round leads him to victory. Needham uses two consistent rounds to run away from the competition.

    Flowery Branch, GA (July 1st, 2012) - The Hurricane Junior Golf Tour traveled to Flowery Branch, Georgia this weekend to host the Royal Lakes Junior Open. This two-day event was held at the impressive Royal Lakes Golf and Country Club. This tournament featured over 60 players from North Carolina, South Carolina, Illinois, Florida, and Georgia. The Royal Lakes Junior Open was ranked by the Junior Golf Scoreboard. The sun was out in force both days and the temperature was in triple digits throughout the weekend.   Two strokes separated the top three players in the Boys 15-18 Division, as Emerson Newsome of Dacula, Georgia ultimately took the title with a two-day total of 142 (70+72). Newsome led the field in Par 4 average (3.95) and recorded the most pars in the tournament with 25. Newsome also led the field with an 88.9% par or better average. Second place honors went Jared O’Kelley of Canton, Georgia with a two-day total of 143 (72+71). O’Kelley led the field with 9 birdies and was second in the field with an 80.6% par or better average. O’Kelley also used a strong par 5 average (4.62) and par 4 average (4.05) to help bring home second place. Rounding out the top three was Hayden Ploeger of Aiken, South Carolina who had a two-day total of 144 (72+72). Ploeger led the field with a par 5 average of 4.38 and was also tied for second with a par or better average of 80.6%.   Sydney Needham captured the first place trophy in the Girls 15-18 Division with a two-day total of 155 (79+76). She jumped out to an early lead and never looked back. Needham led the field in birdies (4) and pars (19). Needham also led the field in par 3 average (3.00), par 4 average (4.40) and par 5 average (5.38). Second place was taken by Meg Callahan of Gainesville, Georgia who posted a score of 173 (88+85). Callahan used her 15 pars and impressive par 5 average (5.50) to help her land second place honors. Our third place finisher was Alex Hudson of Suwanee, Georgia with a two-day total of 176 (90+86). Hudson was runner-up in total pars recorded (15) and Par 4 average (4.75) for the tournament.   The Boys 11-14 Division was won by Ben Huckaby of Bishop, Georgia who fired a two-day total of 144 (73+71). Huckaby led the field in most pars or better (86.1%) and par 3 average (2.75). Finishing just two strokes behind the leader and taking second was Justin Kim (78+68) and Vraj Patel (68+78), both of Rome, Georgia with a two-day totals of 146. Kim was the division’s leader in birdies (8), par 4 performance (4.10) and par breakers (22.0%). Patel had a par or better average of 83.3%, second in total pars (24) and third in total birdies (6).  Our Girls 11-14 Champion was Annika Blanton of Dacula, Georgia who posted a two-day score of 192 (91+101). Blanton carded 1 birdie and 10 pars during her two rounds at Royal Lakes. Blanton had the best par 3 average (3.75), par 4 average (4.90), and par 5 average (6.00).  For more information on the Royal Lakes Junior Open, please visit the HJGT page on Facebook. To get up to the minute tweets during tournaments and important HJGT news follow us on twitter @HJGT. Also, be sure to check out player quotes in our weekly video which can be found on the HJGT website. For a direct link to the HJGT Facebook page, Twitter account, You Tube channel and final round results please visit     Weather: Saturday: Sunny and hot. High of 106. Sunday: Sunny and hot. High of 105.   Tournament Yardages: Boys 15-18 Division: 6778 Boy 11-14 Division: 6116 Girls 15-18 Division: 5748 Girls 11-14 Division: 5213   Tournament Awards:Boys 15-18 Division

  EFX Birdie Challenge: Jared O’Kelley Seaforth Par 4 Performance: Emerson Newsome Coolheads Par 5 Performance: Hayden Ploeger   Girls 15-18 Division:   EFX Birdie Challenge: Sydney Needham Seaforth Par 4 Performance: Sydney Needham Coolheads Par 5 Performance: Sydney Needham   Boys 11-14 Division:   EFX Birdie Challenge: Justin Kim Seaforth Par 4 Performance: Justin Kim Coolheads Par 5 Performance: Spencer Ralston     Girls 11-14 Division:   EFX Birdie Challenge: Annika Blanton Seaforth Par 4 Performance: Annika Blanton Coolheads Par 5 Performance: Annika Blanton     Bridgestone Challenge Winners: Boys 15-18 Division: Charles Dallery Boys 11-14 Division: Brandon Robbins     Golf Pride Comeback Award Winners: Boys 15-18 Division: Sean McKnight Girls 15-18 Division: Kiersten Nowell Boys 11-14 Division: Clayton Saunders    

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