The Hurricane Junior Golf Tour returned to Traditions of Braselton in Jefferson, GA for the rescheduled event Nike Cup Series Event #2 that was previously rained out in May. The weather was much nicer this time around as golfers had mostly sunny skies. There was an hour and a half lightning delay on Saturday afternoon, but golfers were still able to complete the round. The Nike Cup Series is a partnership between Canongate and the HJGT that features outstanding golfers competing in eight events throughout the year. At the end of the year, leaders in the Nike Cup Points standings will face off with the Southeastern Junior Tour in a Ryder Cup style event. In addition to Nike Cup points, AJGA Performance Stars were up for grabs for both boys divisions. Winners in all divisions received an invitation to the 2013 Tour Championship. On top of all that, South Carolina Junior Golf Association Heritage Points and Tarheel Youth Golf Association points were up for grabs. Additionally, top ten finishers will earn points toward end of the year honors, which include All-HJGT teams, state teams, and points towards the inaugural Hurricane Cup. Lastly, winners also will take home a $50 Kikkor Golf gift card.
In the Boys 15-18 Division, Jake Bayer of Lawrenceville, GA took home the first place trophy with rounds of 69 and 74 for a 143 (-1) total. Bayer’s solid play was enough to earn him a two shot victory. Bayer was impressive on par threes as he averaged 2.9. Two shots behind Bayer was McDonough, GA’s Brett Ammons who had consistent rounds of 72 and 73 for a 145 (+1) total. Ammons led the division in birdies with ten. In third was Henry Gee of Hiram, GA who shot 76 and 70 for a 146 (+2) total. Gee was third in the division with eight birdies. Matthew Kim improved his score by 23 strokes to take home the Golf Pride Comeback Player of the Week. Ammons took home the EFX Birdie Challenge with his ten birdies.
The Girls 15-18 Division saw Minji Kim win in impressive fasion with a 71 on Sunday including an eagle on the par four seventh hole. Kim’s 146 (+2) total was good enough for a twelve shot victory. Kim led the division with 23 pars and led in par three, par four, and par five performance. Hannah Solesbee of Winston, GA came in second with a 158 (+14) total. Solesbee had five birdies over the weekend. Meghan Nay of Canton, GA and Ivy Shepherd of Peachtree City, GA tied for third with a 164 (+20) total. Nay and Shepherd each had 18 holes at par or better. Minji Kim also took home the Golf Pride Comeback Player of the Week with a four shot improvement and won the EFX Birdie Challenge with four birdies and an eagle.
Austin Fulton of Villa Rica, GA won the Boys 11-14 Division with two rounds of 72 for an even par 144 total. Fulton won the division by six strokes over Bruce Smith of Atlanta, GA and Dario Ayala of Alpharetta, GA. Fulton had an impressive bogey free streak of 14 holes at one point in the tournament. Fulton led the division with 25 pars. Smith, who shot 78 and 72, finished with 21 pars. Ayala shot 76 and 74 to come in six shots back. Ayala was second in the division with six birdies. Jon Erik Alford, Lorenzo Elbert Jr., and Justin Kim each won EFX bracelets for their seven birdies. Brad Plaziak won the Golf Pride grips with a 13 stroke improvement.
Jenny Bae would win the Girls 11-14 Division with a 149 (+5) total with rounds of 77 and 72. Bae would best the division by nine strokes as Alejandra Ayala of Alpharetta, GA took second with a 158 (+14) total. Bae would tie in the division for most birdies with five. Ayala would finish with four birdies and 19 pars. In third was Leiko Niwano of Duluth, GA who had a 159 (+15) total. Niwano also had 19 pars over the weekend. Bae, as well as Marisa Mukherjee would win the EFX Birdie Challenge with five birdies. Kelly Strickland won Golf Pride grips for her seven stroke improvement on Sunday. Weather: Saturday: Low 90s, mostly sunny, afternoon clouds. Wind 10-15 mph. Sunday: Low 90s, mostly sunny, Wind 10-15 mph. Tournament Yardages: Boys 15-18 Division: 6,704 yards Girls 15-18 Division: 5,854 yards Boys 11-14 Division: 6,266 yards Girls 11-14 Division: 5,231yards Tournament Awards:EFX Birdie Challenge:
Boys 15-18 Division: Brett Ammons Girls 15-18 Division: Minji Kim Boys 11-14 Division: Lorenzo Elbert, Jr., Justin Kim, and Jon Erik Alford Girls 11-14 Division: Jenny Bae and Marisa Mukherjee Golf Pride Comeback Player of the Week: Boys 15-18 Division: Matthew Kim Girls 15-18 Division: Minji Kim Boys 11-14 Division: Brad Plaziak Girls 11-14 Division: Kelly Strickland About us: The Hurricane Junior Golf Tour (HJGT) was founded in 2008 with the intention of providing junior golfers between the ages of 11-18 an opportunity to play exceptional courses in a competitive environment. Golfers who participate on the tour will compete in one of four age divisions: Boys 15-18, Boys 11-14, Girls 11-14 and Girls 15-18. Based out of Jacksonville, FL, the HJGT administers events all across the nation, with stops in Florida, Georgia, South Carolina, North Carolina, Tennessee, Kentucky, Alabama, and Ohio.