Both Nicole Morales of South Salem and Cameron Young of Scarborough moved through two rounds of medal play to win spots in the six-round match play sections of the US Junior Girls' Amateur and US Junior Amateur Championships staged by the USGA. Now the real fun begins as each of the youngsters spends four days on the edge in the single-elimination rounds.
Young took second in the medal rounds, finishing with a two-round total of 138 by adding a two-under 70 to his first-round 68. Young made an eagle on the par-5 10th when he sank an 80-foot putt that broke left to right over a ridge. He made up for a hooked 3-wood at the par-4 16th with a 20-foot putt for birdie and ended the round with a 7-foot par putt on No. 18.
“I played really well yesterday but not quite as strong today,” said Young, who added that he is comfortable with the course and has a good feel for his distance at the 6,000-foot altitude. “I will be more aggressive tomorrow, take on more bunkers off the tee, and go at a lot more flagsticks.”
Jim Liu, 17, of Smithtown, N.Y., shot a 5-under-par 67 on Tuesday to earn medalist honors for the second consecutive year in the 2013 U.S. Junior Amateur Championship at the par-72, 7,740-yard Martis Camp Club. Liu, who carded a 69 in the first round, finished at 8-under 136.
Liu, who shared medalist honors with two other players at last year’s U.S. Junior Amateur, becomes the third player in the championship’s history to twice earn the stroke-play medal, joining Willie Wood and Tiger Woods. Liu fashioned a bogey-free second round, one stroke off the course record.
Morales, like the rest of the field in the Junior Girls' Am at Sycamore Hills Golf Club in Fort Wayne, Indiana, struggled with the wind and shot a four-over 76 to go with her first-day score of 69 for a T-11 145. Tuesday’s steady winds wreaked havoc with scores, with the field average at 79.19, up nearly two strokes from Monday’s 77.37. Only six players managed under-par rounds on Tuesday, as opposed to 16 on Monday. Bailey Tardy posted two 69s to earn medalist honors
Nine players competed for the final match-play spot, with Abbey Carlson earning the 64th seed on the second playoff hole. In a wonderful display of sportsmanship, Morales finished her round, then caddied for Carlson in the playoff.
Among many other books, Dave Donelson is the author of Weird Golf: 18 tales of fantastic, horrific, scientifically impossible, and morally reprehensible golf